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DUKE 
UNIVERSITY 




DIVINITY SCHOOL 
LIBRARY 



HISTORY 



FIRST BAPTIST CHURCH 

Elizabeth City, North Carolina 



1786-1961 



By 

A. H. OUTLAW 



' t 

Preface ; ' • / ^ ^> 

r 4~ /J 

The Board of Deacons in March, 1960 appointed Mr. Gerald White 
and Mrs. J. H. LeRoy, Jr. to look into the advisabihty of having the 
Church history written and should they find it advisable at this time 
were given authority to take whatever steps they deem plausable to 
have the work done. The following month Mrs. LeRoy approached me 
in regard to doing the job. I was flattered and was conscious, as I have 
increasingly been throughout the undertaking, of my limitations. And 
yet, the Church had meant too much to me and my family for me to 
shirk a task which the committee, the Board of Deacons and the entire 
membership has seemed so willing to trust me with. Here, I was ordain- 
ed to the Baptist ministry and after some years the Church gave me 
the honorary title of Assistant Pastor. Here, my wife and I have worship- 
ed and led our two daughters to worship. Here, our daughters made a 
public profession of faith and were baptized at a tender and impression- 
able age and subsequently took their marriage vows. The Church, over 
the past thirty years and particularly during my recent extended illness, 
made many presentations of lo\'e and friendship. Well, when Mrs, LeRoy 
came to see me I tried to show some degree of modesty, but down deep 
I really wanted to do the history, if I could. It has been a pleasure. It 
has truly been a labor of lo\'e and gratitude. But tlie gathering and put- 
ting together of tliese historical data, though it has been long and tedious, 
is only a small token in comparison with my indebtedness to the Church. 

A book of history is like a telescope through which one may 
look into the past ages. See the customs, achievements, shortcomings of 
those who lived before him. Antiquity comes alive to his clouded memo- 
ries, and he is able to comprehend the trutli or falsity of tlie many tales 
and traditions which he has heard. Moreover, he may profit by tlie 
fortunes or misfortunes of his forebears. 

There is a well worn tradition tliat our Church minutes up to 
1857 were lost in a fire, which is probably true, but there are no refer- 
ences in the immediately succeeding minutes to prove it, much less to 
give any details which we would ordinarily expect. There may have 



been a fire in 1846 or 1847. We do not know what became of the Meet- 
ing House which was replaced with a new one, the construction of which 
began in the early part of 1847. It is possible this old Meeting House 
was burned as was the first one on Knobs Creek, and the records up to 
that time burned in it. But if that be the case the question arises: Where 
are the minutes of the next ten years? Another possibility is that they 
could have been burned in a fire which destroyed a parsonage in the 
early part of 1886. Could the minute books have been divided, with 
those up to 1857 in the parsonage and burned, and those after 1857 
somewhere else and saved? The most likely fire to have destroyed them 
was one mentioned in the February 25, 1860 minutes but there are some 
questions about this fire which will have to go unanswered. In that con- 
ference it is stated "No minutes were read as a consequence of their 
having been burnt up in the recent fire." Where was the fire - in the 
Church, parsonage, Clerk's home? When? What else belonging to the 
Church was lost? Something else is strange about tliis conference: The 
two previous leaves in that minute book and the bottom sections of three 
lea\es previous to them have, some time, been cut out of the book with 
no explanation of why it was done. We presume this fire to have oc- 
curred the month or quarter preceding that February 25 conference, 
depending upon whether it was a monthly or quarterly conference; and 
it was those minutes that were not read. If in fact however, tliis was the 
fire which tradition tells us destroyed our minutes up to 1857, the logical 
assumption is that those minutes were in a book or books at the scene of 
the fire while the minutes beginning with March 27, 1857, the earliest we 
have, to February 25, 1860 were in another book being kept somewhere 
else at the time. It is a fact that our March 27, 1857 minutes do begin a 
new book. 

In view of this tragedy, wherever and whenever it happened, the 
task of obtaining complete information for the first seventy years of our 
history has been one impossible of achievement. However, a few cryptic 
notes by historians writing during that period and minutes of our Cho- 
wan Association and Kehukee, the mother Association, give us informa- 
tion worth\' to be documented in this volumn. 



On July 4, 1868 the Church appointed Brothers J. M. and A. B. 
Morgan to collect information in regard to its history. This was only 68 
years after constitution and many were still alive who could have help- 
ed them and they could have given us a fair picture of what transpired, 
but if they made any attempts and compiled anytliing at all, there is no 
record of it. 

Several years ago Dr. J. T. Riddick, a Chowan Association native 
and friend of this Church, furnished us a typewritten copy of a study 
which he made principally from the Associational minutes which dealt 
mostly with a list of successive pastors and a few other notes of interest. 
Some of this has been very helpful, but information available now which 
was probably not available to him proves a few of his observations to be 
in error. I have relied a great deal, however upon much of Dr. Riddick's 
manuscript history and have been able to supplement it in many respects. 

When Mrs. Kate Wood Aydlett was Church Secretary a few 
years ago she made 40 or 50 pages of typewritten notes taken from tlie 
Church minutes witli the view of writing a brief history herself, but 
abandoned the idea and made her notes available to our committee. They 
have been a great deal of help. 

I have read all existing Church minutes, Associational minutes 
both Kehukee and Chowan; and everything else I could find that would 
spread any light upon any area of the Church activities. Many letters 
have been written and many people interviewed. In fact, I have written 
to and interviewed a few so many times about so many things, that I 
have felt like I was imposing upon and pestering them, but whenever 
it was possible to help they have come tlirough with flying colors, for 
which I am deeply grateful. 

Most of tlie important phases of our Church life has been treated 
upon, but I have tried not to burden the reader with too much detail. 
Perhaps there were some phases that should have been included and 
some included that should have been omitted. There are many missing 
links in the chain of events which make the history far from complete 
and leaves much to be desired because of incomplete and inaccurate 



records and because of my own limitations to put into writing properly 
what we do have. But it is submitted with the hope and prayer that it 
may prove interesting and inspiring enough to be read; that it may lead 
us to a greater appreciation of our history, a greater interest in the 
Kingdom of God, and that whatever our organizations and programs may 
be, they may be recorded and preserved for the encouragement of those 
who come after us. 

It should be of great interest to this and future generations of our 
Church that under a project sponsored by the State Department of 
Archives and History our Church minutes from 1857 to 1960 have been 
microfilmed by that Department to be preserved in Raleigh and read 
with ease through their reading machine by anyone who may be in- 
terested. 

ABNER H. OUTLAW 



Contents 



I. Historical Background, Constitution and Associational Affiliation 8 

II. Names Adopted by the Church 15 

III. From Calvinism to Arminianism 18 

IV. Church Covenants 21 

V. Rules of Decorum 26 

VI. The Sanctuary 33 

VII. Additional Building Programs 56 

VIII. Pastors 64 

IX. The Office of Deacon and List of Deacons 83 

X. Clerks (Secretaries) 93 

XI. Treasurers and Financial Secretaries 95 

XII. Frequency of Preaching 105 

XIII. The Baptistry and the Ordinance of Baptism 107 

XIV. The Memorial Supper 113 

XV. Disciplining of the Members 117 

XVI. Baptist Burial Ground 128 

XVII. Methods of Financing 143 

XVIII. Sunday School 151 

XIX. Revivals 1 59 

XX. Spot Checks on the Growth in Membership 167 

XXI. Our Daughter Churches 170 

XXII. Pastors' Homes 183 

XXIII. Ordained Ministers Other Than Pastors 

Holding Membership in the Church 192 

XXIV. Singing and Music 205 

XXV. The Ladies Aid Society 217 

XXVI. Woman's Missionary Society 222 

XXVII. Sunday Bulletins 226 

XXVIII. Missions Other Than Daughter Churches 252 

XXIX. Missions and Benevolences 258 

XXX. Baptist Training Union 266 

XXXI. Educational Directors 270 

XXXII. Daily Vacation Bible School 272 

XXXIII. Baptist Brotherhood 275 

XXXIV. Entertainment of Associations, Conventions, etc. 277 

XXXV. In Memoriam (Memorial Gifts) 281 

XXXVI. Miscellaneous 286 

XXXVll. Conclusion 296 



CHAPTER I 

Historical Background, Constitution and 
Associational Affiliation 

According to Burkitt and Read, History of the Kehukee Associa- 
tion, the Gospel was first preached in this neighborhood by the Baptists 
about 1760. Elders John Burgess, Henry Abbot and James Gamewell 
were some of the first ministers who preached here. Elder Lemuel 
Burkitt used to attend the small but interested group very frequently 
in 1771 and 1772. 

A brief sketch of each of these pioneer preachers in this neighbor- 
hood probabh' will interest the reader. Much more could be said about 
most of them, not onh' as ministers of the Gospel, but as civic and 
political leaders as well. 

John Burgess was the son of Elder William Burgess, Sr. in whose 
house Shiloh, our mother Church, was organized by Elder Paul Palmer 
in 1727. \\^illiam Burgess was Shiloh's first pastor and served until 1758 
when he was succeeded by his son, John Burgess, who continued until 
his death on July 13, 1763. 

Henry Abbot was bred a Churchman (Church of England), the 
son of Rev. John Abbot, Canon of St. Paul's in London. He came to 
America when quite young without the consent or knowledge of his 
parents; was baptized a General Baptist by Elder Joseph Parker in Little 
Contentnea Creek, Greene County, North Carolina in 1758 and succeed- 
ed John Burgess as pastor at Shiloh. He also served until his death which 
occurred in Ma\-, 1791. Abbot was not only a dexoted pastor but he was 
a statesman of the first order; being a member of the Pro\incial Con- 
gress, meeting in Halifax in April and November, 1776. On December 22, 
1776 he introduced the following resolution: "That all regular ministers 
of the Gospel of e\ery denomination shall be empowered to celebrate 
matrimony, according to the rites and ceremonies of their respective 
churches." The resolution passed its final reading the same day, thus 
repealing in effect Goxernor William Tryon's hateful marriage laws 



which gave only clergymen of tlie Church of England the right to per- 
form marriage ceremonies. The proposed State Constitution, as reported 
from committee on December 6, 1776, Article six in the Bill of Rights 
declared: 'That all men have a natural and inalienable right to worship 
God according to the dictates of their own consciences." Abbot is credit- 
ed with having presented this Article. He was also a member of the 
1778 Convention for the deliberation of the Federal Constitution and 
assisted greatly in having its adoption delayed until it contained sub- 
stantially the same religious liberties described above. 

James Gamewell was probably a native of present Dare County 
and at first a member of the Shiloh Church. He purchased a home site 
in the Kitty Hawk area, tlien a part of Currituck County, in 1783 and 
was at that time pastor of the old Cowenjock Baptist Church, constituted 
in 1780 near Currituck CouiiJiouse which rejected tlie missionary in- 
clinations of the Chowan Association a few years after its constitution 
in 1806 and returned to the anti-missionary Kehukee Association and 
finally died within the memory of some of Currituck County's older 
citizens. 

Lemual Burkitt was born in 1750, in the Yeopim section of Chowan 
Count}'; was baptized by Henry Abbot at Shiloh and within t\vo months 
was ordained and became Assistant Pastor in which capacity he served 
for two years - 1771 and 1772. It was during this period that he e\ange- 
lized between the Pasquotank and Chowan Rivers, including the Eliz- 
abetli Cit}^ area. When the Kehukee Association met at Pungo, Virginia 
in 1773 he was in attendance and altliough he was only 23 years of age 
was elected Clerk which position he held until the di\ision to form the 
Chowan in 1806 and was tlie first Clerk of the Chowan Association. He 
died in February, 1807 in the second year of his serWces as Clerk of the 
Association. In 1803 he co-authored with Elder Jesse Read a Concise 
History of the Kehukee Association. Sandy Run Church, in Bertie County, 
called him as pastor in 1773 and he remained there until his death. J. W. 
Moore, in his History of North Carolina Baptists, states of him that 
"When the Baptists of America were then in travail over the gra\'e dif- 
ferences which made two people Burkitt pro\'ed to be a man of extra- 



ordinary endowments. His gifts were not only conspicuous in the Kehu- 
kee Association but of all the many thousands who have lived and died 
in the Baptist faith in North Carolina, he did most for its advancement." 

Apparently, tlie task of organizing a Baptist Church here was one 
very difficult of achievement since, according to the above account it 
required about twenty-six years of occasional preaching and evangelizing 
before there were enough Baptists here to form an independent church. 
Probably the two main reasons for this was: first, the already Established 
Church of England in the area who looked upon the Baptist itinerates 
as an ignorant, ranting set of preachers; and second, the scarcity of 
preachers who could not give enough time to one given area to establish 
a church. 

What few Baptists there were here when these evangelists began 
were members of the Shiloh Church and, as new converts were made, 
they also took membership tliere until the new Church was organized. 
Yeopim, organized in 1775 in Chowan County, and the above mentioned 
old Cowenjock Church, organized in 1780 near Currituck Courthouse, 
were the nearest other Baptist Churches. 

It was only five years after American independence was guaran- 
teed by the fall of the British army at Yorktown and three years before 
Ceorge Washington was inaugurated first President of the United States, 
when this church was organized in the early part of 1786. The country 
had not yet recovered from its sacrifices of man power, and the economy 
was terribly strained by the seven years of war for independence. 

North Carolina had not yet ratified tlie Federal Constitution. 
Richard Caswell, first elected Governor, had ten years previously re- 
quested the deacons of our mother Church to act as magistrates of the 
peace until the machinery of State Government could be completed and 
put in operation. He was succeeded by Abner Nash, Thomas Burke and 
Alexander Martin; and was now back in office for his second term. 

Elizabeth City was a mere village in 1786 going by the name 
Redding and was incorporated under that name in 1793, soon changing 



10 



to Elizabeth Town and finally to Elizabeth City in 1801. The town did 
not have the Courthouse until thirteen years after the Church was or- 
ganized, it being moved from Nixonton in 1799. However, Burkitt and 
Read in describing the location of the Church stated that "the Meeting 
House in which the Church assembles is within two miles of Elizabeth 
City, the metropolis of Pasquotank County. 

There is no record of charter members or exactly who was present 
to preside and assist in the perfection of the organization. However, 
there is little doubt that there were no more than twenty-five or thirty 
in the new organization and that Henry Abbot, their pastor up to that 
time, and other enfluential members of the mother Church were present. 
We cannot deny that one or more of the other early missionaries above 
mentioned were present with their prayers and best wishes to help do 
the honors. 

Beginning with Shiloh and Chowan in 1727 tliere were, by around 
1760, eighteen Baptist Churches in Eastern North Carolina. These were 
known as General Baptist (Arminian), not to speak of Sandy Creek and 
two or three other Separate Baptist Churches (Also Arminian) under 
the leadership of Elder Shubal Stearns a little further to the West. These 
General Baptists, as indicated by their name, believed in a general pro- 
vision of grace or atonement for sin, through Christ for all who, by their 
own free will, would believe and accept Him as their Saviour. The Bap- 
tists of the Philadelphia Association, on the other hand, being Canvin- 
istic, believed in a provision of grace or atonement for sin to particular 
individuals whom God had predestined or elected from the foundation 
of the world to be saved; that He would in His own time and manner 
bring them to a knowledge of it and that no others could be saved. There- 
fore, they were known as Particular Baptists. 

This Association in 1755 sent proselyters (They could not be prop- 
erly called missionaries) to tlie General Baptists of Eastern North Caro- 
lina and within five or six years all but four of the eighteen churches 
had defected to the Particulars. 

It must be noted however, tliat none of the churches defecting 



11 



to the Particulars were unanimous in their decisions. In fact, they 
averaged only about ten per cent of their membership. Many others 
came in later, but there were many who never did, including three 
ministers: Joseph and William Parker, first cousins, and John Winfield. 
Joseph Parker assumed leadership of this remnant of the General Bapt- 
ists and organized two or three more churches in Lenoir, Greene and 
Pitt Counties. They refused to sacrifice their long cherished and sound 
doctrine of the general provision of grace, and freedom of the will to 
accept or reject it. For several years the Particulars had called them 
free willers; and although it was in derision the remaining General Bap- 
tists became rather proud of it. Consequently, they, under the leadership 
of Joseph Parker accepted it as the name of a new denomination which 
we know today as the Original Free Will Baptists. 

The Particulars on November 6, 1769 organized at Kehukee 
Church in Halifax County, the Kehukee Association which still struggles 
for survival and is the fourth oldest Baptist Association in America. 
First was the Philadelphia, second the Charleston in South Carolina, 
third the Sandy Creek (Arminian) and fourth the Kehukee. 

In 1775 the Kehukee split over the question of reforms for a con- 
verted membership. The two factions: reformers and non-reformers held 
separate meetings until 1788, each claiming to be the Kehukee Associa- 
tion. The reforming group soon sought not only reconciliation with the 
non-reforming group but also a union at least in doctrines with the 
Sandy Creek Association of Separate Baptists; and it was at this 1788 
session held in May that this goal was achieved. Negotiations had begun 
at the 1785 session of the reforming side and in May, 1786 at deacon 
Joshua Freeman's home in Bertie County (The session at which our 
Church was admitted and participated) the committee appointed at the 
1785 session recommended the following terms of reconciliation and 
union: 

1. We think tliat none but believers in Christ have a ri<?ht to the ordinance 
of baptism; therefore, we will not hold conninmion of those who plead for the 
validity of baptism in unbelief. 

2. We leave every church member to decide for himself whether he has 
been baptized in unbelief or not. 

12 



3. We leave every minister at liberty to baptize, or not, such persons as 
desire to be baptized, being scrupulous about their former baptism. 

The temis were adopted at the 1787 session and in 1788 two of 
the most prominent Separate Baptist Churches were admitted: Newport, 
Carteret County, and New River, Onslow County. Also, at this session 
the remaining six of the non-reforming side were admitted, others having 
been admitted at previous sessions. 

Therefore, the following historic resolution was adopted: 

That those bars which heretofore subsisted between the Baptists among us, 
formerly Regulars (Particulars) and Separates, be taken down; and that general 
union and communion take place according to the terms proposed at Brother Joshua 
Freeman's in Bertie County in May, 1786; and that the names Regulars (Particulars) 
and Separates be buried in oblivion, and that we should henceforth be known to the 
world by the name United Baptists. 

These terms appeared to be satisfactory to both factions of the 
Kehukee and also to the Sandy Creek Separates. Soon other fomier 
Separate Churches of the Sandy Creek Association because of con- 
\enience united with the Kehukee, the nearest of which was Cashie, in 
Bertie County. The name United Association was used until 1793 when 
it consisted of fort}/-nine churches and 3,440 members. At this session 
it dismissed 23 churches to form the Neuse Association and then resumed 
its original name, Kehukee. 

This Church remained in the mother Association, the Kehukee, 
until 1806 when it was decided, again for conxenience, to divide and 
form tlie Chowan. We were represented in the organizational session at 
Salem by John Hamilton and Benjamin 0\'erman who reported for the 
past year twenty-five baptisms, received by letter one, dismissed twenty- 
four, excommunicated one and a total present membership of ninty-nine. 

Harmony did not prevail very long in the Kehukee Association 
of which our Church was at first a member. Year after year there was a 
growing tendency toward Christian education and missionary means 
of spreading the Gospel and reaching lost people for Christ, particularly 
among the younger set of ministers, the most outstanding of which was 
Elder Martin Ross. Otliers still contended that there should be no human 
effort; that God would in His own time and manner bring to salvation 



13 



those whom He had chosen. The final eruption came at the 1827 session 
(twenty-one years after the Chowan was formed) when "It was agreed 
to discard all missionary societies, Bible societies and theological semi- 
naries, and tlie practices heretofore resorted to for their support, in beg- 
ging for money from the public; and if any person should be among us, as 
agents of any of the said societies, we hereafter discountenance them in 
tliose practices; and if under a character of a minister of the Gospel, 
we will not envite them into our pulpits; believing tliese societies and 
institutions to be the inventions of men and not warranted from the 
Word of God." C. B. Hassell, History of the Kehukee Association, states 
that 'TDcfore the vote was taken there was a diversity of sentiment, and 
brethren freely interchanged views on the subject. Some of course were 
favorable to the toleration of these innovations, and pleaded for them 
with all their power. On taking the vote, it was found that the large 
majority were opposed to these new men-made schemes; and it was then 
agreed to make the vote unanimous; and the same was accordingly done." 

Thus, the Kehukee Association to which our Church first attach- 
ed itself became anti-missionary v/hich, along with others of like senti- 
ments became the Primitive Baptist denomination that we know today. 
Other Associations previously formed from the Kehukee: first the Ports- 
mouth, in Virginia in 1790, second the Neuse in 1793 and third the 
Chowan in 1806; along with the Sandy Creek moved forward to form 
the present Baptist State Convention in 1830 and became a part of what 
is today the largest religious denomination of the South, the Missionary 
Baptists, co-operating through die Southern Baptist Convention, organ- 
ized in 1845. 

The reader can visualize from the foregoing chapter that the pre- 
organizational period of our Church and its early growth into maturity 
came at a time of great theological examination. It was a time when not 
only the different Baptist theologians and groups were taking their 
respective stands for what they believed and sought to practice, but at 
a time when other schools of religious thought were being introduced in 
America and other evangelical denominations were also becoming estab- 
lished in the young Republic of religious freedom. 



14 



CHAPTER II 
Names Adopted by the Church 

Names of religious denominations and local churches originated 
much like the sur-names of individuals in the long ago and which 
modern families still bear. Because of circumstances or surroundings 
effecting an individual, a name commensurate thereto was added to his 
baptismal or Christian name. For example, John became John the Bap- 
tist because he was made famous by his baptizing and his descendants 
most likely used the name Baptist following their Christian names. 

Religious denominations are first and basically Christian and one 
of our younger denominations has built a strong constituency upon the 
premise that the name Christian is sufficient and there should be no other. 
However, some older denominations, who claim to be equally Christian, 
in their infancy acquired additional names. Catholics were so named 
because they claimed to be tlie universal Church and no other so-called 
Christian body counted; Methodists were called by that name because 
of their systematic method of denominational operation; and Baptists, 
because tliey were sticklers for the ordinance of baptism. Baptists are 
different from Catholics and Methodists in that we refer to each local 
congregation as a church while tliey refer to tlie denomination as the 
church. 

However, in all cases each local congregation in addition to being 
first a Christian body and secondarily being Baptists, Methodists, Catho- 
lics, etc., is given a local name to distinguish it from other nearby con- 
gregations. 

As early as 1794 our Church adopted a Church Covenant which 
refers to it as the Baptist Church of Christ, which is basically correct, 
but in addition to that, as other churches, we had to have a distinguish- 
ing local name - a prefix to the name Baptist Church of Christ or just 
plain Baptist Church. Many local churches deciding upon names took 
into consideration, among other things, the geographical and topo- 
graphical circumstances surrounding them; and if it became necessary 

15 



to move to other locations, the names of the churches often needed to 
be changed to conform to the new surroundings and conditions. The 
record re\eals that our Church has, because of geographical surround- 
ings, mo\'ing and various circumstances, had five different names during 
its long history: 

Knobscrook 

The short creek near which this Church's first Meeting House 
was located, altliough its general course was from west to east into 
Pasquotank River, was so very crooked that its crooks formed what ap- 
peared to be six knobs. These knobs were so spelled because they re- 
sembled knolls; the only differnce being that three of them pointed 
northward and three pointed southward instead of pointing upward, as 
do knolls. However, Colonial records show other spellings also. As early 
as 1714 one James Pritchard obtained a patent for 280 acres of land 
lying in Nobbs Creek. The same year Edmond Chancy obtained a patent 
for 553 acres of land lying in Pasquotank River at Knobbs Crook. We 
also find it spelled Nobs Crook Creek. As late as 1775 the latter spelling 
is shown on a map now in the possession of General John E. Wood, 
Elizabeth City native and now of Currituck. It is also so spelled on a 
Clement map drawn about that time, the pertinent part of which is 
shown in the chapter on Sanctviaries. However, the Clement map shows 
onlv one major crook and it is somewhat exaggerated. A recent aerial 
map shows the crooks described above. The name finally evolved to 
Knobbs Creek, its modern spelling. 

The original meeting house of our Church was located in close 
proximity to one of the crooks or knobs (Nobs) of the creek - the one 
nearest to Pasquotank River. It would not have been the least unusual 
to ha\'e named the Church Knobs Creek (Which they did do in a few 
years), but we must say that it was very unique to accent both the name 
of the creek and also tlie crook in the creek in the name of the Church. 
When the Church was admitted to the reform group of the Kehukee 
Association on May 26, 1786 it was recorded as Knobscrook. In 1791 it 
was still listed as Knobscrook and John Stafford was the messenger, but 
in 1792 it was listed as Knobscreek which was probably an error because 



16 



it was represented again in 1794 by John Stafford and he had it corrected 
back to Knobscrook. In 1796 Bailey Jackson, Esq., represented the 
Church and had it so recorded, in 1798 Stafford was back and gave it 
the same name. Burkitt and Read, in their History of the Kehukee As- 
sociation, published in 1803, called it Knobscrook and it became a con- 
stituent member of the Chowan Association at Salem in 1806 under that 
name. The next year when the Chowan met at Cashie, in Bertie County, 
it was listed for the last time as Knobscrook. 

Knobscreek 

In 1807 the Church decided to alter tlie unusual name from that 
of Knobscrook to a more conventional one, that of Knobscreek; and from 
then until 1811 it represented in the Chowan Association as Knobscreek. 

Elizabeth 

In 1805-6 the Church re-located from Knobscreek to West Main 
Street in what was incorporated in 1793 as Reading (Sometimes spelled 
Redding). Later Reading was changed to Elizabeth Town and finally in 
1801 to Elizabeth City. 

Although the Church moved into Reading it never gave up the 
name Knobscrook or Knobscreek for the name of the new location; and 
when Reading was changed to Elizabeth Town the Church did not ac- 
cept that name in full, but did accept Elizabeth and was so listed in the 
Chowan Associational minute for the first time in 1811. It continued 
under this name through the 1815 session. 

Elizabeth City 

Fifteen years after the town changed its name to Elizabeth City 
the Church also conformed to the full name of Elizabeth City. It was 
so listed in the 1816 session of the Association for the first time and con- 
tinued as such until 1904. 

Elizabeth City First 

The last change became advisable in 1904 when the Blackwell 
Memorial Baptist Church was organized. Blackwell being the second 
Baptist Church in the City, our Church natiually changed its name to 
the Elizabeth City First Baptist Church. 



17 



CHAPTER III 

From Calvinism to Arminianism 

John Calvin, born in Noyon, France July 10, 1509, published in Latin 
when only 28 years of age, the first edition of Institutes of the Christian 
religion in which he elaborated upon the Sovereignty of the will of God 
including the doctrines of predestination, election and reprobation; and 
that doctrine to this day has been known as Calvinism. The first Baptist 
Association in America, the Philadelphia, organized in 1707 was, certain- 
ly after 1743, hyper-Calvinistic in doctrine. 

On the contrary, Jacobus Arminus, born at Ouderwater, South 
Holland October 10, 1560, studying at age 43 to become the leader of 
Calvinism succeeding John Calvin, became converted to the doctrine of 
general atonement for sin as described in chapter I which has since been 
known as Arminianism. As stated also in that chapter the first 18 Baptist 
churches in Eastern North Carolina were Anninian but between 1755 
and 1760 all but four defected to Calvinism. These churches organized 
the Kehukee Association on November 6, 1769 and modeled it after the 
Philadelphia Association in all points of doctrine. The Philadelphia's 
proselyters (They could hardly be called missionaries) to these first 18 
General Baptist churches in Eastern North Carolina were Elders Peter 
P. Vanhorn and Benjamin Miller. They were sent by the Philadelphia 
Association to convert these churches to Calvinism. 

In the meantime, on November 22, 1755 Elder Shubal Stearns and 
company, a group of Separate Baptists, but Arminian in faith, arrived 
at Sandy Creek in Randolph County, North Carolina from New England, 
and by 1758 had established enough churches to form the Sandy Creek 
Association. 

The Kehukee split in 1775 over the question of proposed reforms 
requiring a converted membership rather than baptizing persons into 
tlie churches just upon their statement of desiring baptism witliout any 
supporting evidence of having had a change of heart and a personal 
revelation of God's eternal purpose for them as His elect. The reforming 



18 



group sought union with the Sandy Creek Association. They met jointly 
on Saturday before the second Sunday in May, 1777 witli the Sappony 
Church, Sussex County, Virginia and agreed upon terms of union. The 
Kehukee Association made Httle or no concessions in doctrine, but the 
Sandy Creek was so eager for union that they, at least outwardly, made 
almost a complete defection to the Calvinistic beliefs of the Kehukee. 
They apparently thought that once organic union was effected, they 
would by association be able to eventually see Arminianism prevail - 
and they did. However, in order to achieve organic union they agreed to 
articles three, six, seven, nine and ten which included the Calvinistic 
doctrines in their boldest form: 

3. We believe, that God before the foundation of the world, for a pur- 
pose of his own glory, did elect a certain number of men and angels to eternal life; 
and that this election is particular, eternal and unconditional on the creature's part. 

6. We also believe, that it is utterly out of the power of men, as fallen 
creatures, to keep the law of God perfectly, repent of their sins truly, or believe 
in Christ, except they be drawn by the Holy Spirit. 

7. We believe, that in God's own appointed time and way (by means 
which he has ordained) the elect shall be called, justified, pardoned and sanctified, 
and that it is impossible that they can utterly refuse the call; but shall be made 
willing, by divine grace to receive the offers of mercy. 

9. We believe in like manner, that God's elect shall no^ only be called and 
justified, but that they shall be converted, born again, and changed by the effectual 
working of God's Holy Spirit. 

10. We belie\e, that such as are converted, justified and called by His 
grace, shall preserve in holiness and never fall finally away. 

So much for the background of doctrines among Baptists in East- 
ern North Carolina, leading up to the constitution of this Church just 
nine years later. No alterations had been made and there is no doubt, 
paradoxical as it may seem in this era of the Church, that our founding 
fathers Vv^ere grounded in Calvinism. But, the reader may say: perhaps 
our founding fathers were under the enfluence of the Separates who were 
still at heart Arminian in faith. Not so. The nearest Separate church to 
Elizabeth City was the Cashie Church in Bertie Count)', organized in 
1771. The Constitution of our Church was mainly under the enfluence 
of Elder Henry Abbott, pastor of Shiloh, the mother Church, then well 
past middle age and experienced in Calvinism. 

19 



For many years ours and other churches of the Kehukee Associa- 
tion were under the bhght of hyper-Calvinism. Even after the Associa- 
tion was divided and the Chowan was formed in 1806 the Chowan was 
plagued to a distressing degree with its enfluence in some of the 
churches. And, but for Elder Martin Ross and a few others who could 
see the inconsistency between Calvinism and missionary effort and had 
convictions for Christian education and the spread of the Gospel, what 
few Baptist churches we would have left today would be as the few 
which we know as Primitive Baptist churches, struggling for survival. 
Just waiting for the last member of God's "elect" to be called home. 

Even as late as 1901 while Dr. Claude W. Duke was our pastor, 
the Church published a Manual which contained Declarations of Faith, 
a few copies of which are still extant and on page ten we find some ex- 
pression of Calvinism, though in a milder form: 

Nearly all Baptists belie\e what are usually termed the "doctrines of grace;" 
the absolute sovereignty and foreknowledge of God; His eternal and unchangeable 
purpose of decrees; that salvation, in its beginning, continuance and completion is 
God's free gift; that, in Christ, we are elected or cliosen, personally or individually, 
from eternity, saved and called out from the world, not according to our works, but 
according to His own purpose and grace, through sanctification of the spirit and of 
the truth; that we are kept by his power from falling away, and will be presented 
faultless before the presence of His glory. 

As a consequence of adherence to Cahinism our Church as well 
as other Baptists up until not too many years ago, were close communion- 
ists as shown in chapter XIX on the Lord's Supper and as was expressed 
in the first Church Covenant: "Being taught of God's word that the 
church of Christ is a garden enclosed, a spring shut up, a fountain seal- 
ed." 

We as a Church have co-operated with other Baptists in ridding 
ourselves of Calvinism and have become Arminian and open commun- 
ionists. As a result, coupled with united effort in Christian Education, 
world-wide missions, the ministry of healing, etc. God has blessed us to 
be a part of the largest religious denomination in the South. 



20 



CHAPTER IV 

Church Covenants 

There is little doubt that our first record book contained a Church 
Covenant but since, according to tradition our records up to 1857 were 
destroyed in a fire, we are not privileged to read it from the minute 
book. However, we can be almost sure that the Covenant printed below 
was subscribed to by our Church upon its constitution. Dr. George W. 
Paschall, History of North Carolina Baptists, states that it was written 
in 1771 by Elders Peter P. Vanhom and Benjamin Miller, ministers of 
the Philadelphia Particular Baptist Association, and largely responsible 
for the several General Baptist churches in Eastern North Carolina de- 
fecting from the Arminian doctrines of a general atonement to the Cal- 
vinistic doctrines of a particular atonement for a few whom God had 
predestined and foreordained to be saved. The Covenant was written 
for use in the constitution of all early Baptist churches in North Caro- 
lina, but particularly for the Sandy Creek Church of Franklin County 
which also had some members in Wake and Nash Counties. A copy of 
it is preserved in the record book of that Church nov/ in the Wake For- 
est College library: 

For as much as God has been graciously pleased to make known unto us 
by his re\'ealed will, his word of truth, the great privileges of the blessed Gospel of 
our dear Lord and Saviour Jesus Clirist, and hath made us experience his love and 
favour in that he hath called us from our state of nature in which state we were 
enemies to God by wicked works, and has revealed Christ in us the hope of glory, 
therefore, for the better carrying on to our mutual comfort and the advancement of 
the great privileges of the true religion of the glory of God and praise of his glorious 
Gospel grace, we whose names are hereunto subscribed, inhabitants of Franklin, 
Wake and Nash counties and State of North Carolina, being all of us baptized on 
a profession of faith and belief of our ever living and only true God, and of a Trin- 
ity of Persons in unity of Essence, the Father, the Son, and the Holy Ghost, sub- 
sisting in the unity of the Godhead, the eternally begotten Son of God, and (One) 
with the Father in Essence, and equal in Person, in the fulness of time, did take 
human nature into that inseparable union with his Divine person, and in the same 
did fulfill the Law, died on the cross, thereby making atonement for sin, satisfied 
divine justice and purchased peace for sinners, that all mankind fell from the estate 
of created innocency in, with and by Adam's first sin, and became liable to the wrath 
of God's holy law, convinced of their estate and condition, consequently have no 
liope of eternal life, until by the same law convinced of this, and the damning 
nature of all sin in us from the root, and so made to fly for eternal life by faith in 

21 



the Lord Jesus Christ who alone is the mediator of the New Covenant, and the 
redeemer of God's elect without any merit in us, or moving cause of God in us fore- 
seen to merit his mercy, was delivered to death for our offences, and that we might 
be truly justified by his free and sovereign grace was raised again for our justifica- 
tion, and in whom only we have redemption through his precious blood, even the 
forgiveness of our sins, we believe that he ascended into heaven and there sitteth 
at the right hand of God the Father, from thence he will come to judge the quick 
and the dead at the last great day, and believing also the doctrine of the Scriptures 
in all orthodox points, the doctrine of Baptism, laying on of hands peculiar to the 
ministerial function, final perseverance in grace, the resurrection of the dead bodies 
of men and the eternal judgement, together with all those principles and articles 
adopted by the Baptist Association of Philadelphia anno Dom 1742 and reprinted 
in 1743 to join together in a Gospel Church relation and fellowship . . . we gave 
ourselves to the Lord, and unto one another by the will of God according to 2 Co- 
rinthians, 8th Chapter and 15th verse; as a church of Christ we do solemnly and 
voluntarily and mutually covenant with one another to meet together every Lord's 
day, as many as can conveniently, to celebrate the worship of the Almighty God, 
to edify one another in his service, in the best manner we can, and do promise to 
each other to keep the day holy and watch over each of our families and children 
under our care, that they may do the same; at all (times) behaving ourselves as be- 
cometh the Gospel of oiu: dear Redeemer Jesus Christ whom we now take for our 
head and king, our prophet and our priest, and according to our ability to promote 
the glory of God, our own benefit and the good of others so as not to break the order 
of the Gospel Church by taking upon ourselves any office or dignity of the same 
of the ministiy or other until tliereunto called by the voice of the church according 
to God's ordinances - he that exalteth himself shall be abased, and he that humbleth 
himself shall be exalted - and that no man taketh the office unto himself unless 
he is hereunto called; and jointly to maintain the worship of God and to edify one 
another in love, and as God shall enable us by his grace to maintain the doctrine 
of the blessed Gospel and to regulate our practices by the word of God, and to 
watch over one another therein in the Lord, Philippians 2 chapter and 4tli verse, 
and admonish, encourage, and reprove each other if need be according to Gospel 
rules in love, and to be admonished and reproved by each other as the word of God 
directs, as far as God shall enable us; to perform all mutual duties toward each 
other and to those that shall hereafter join with us, and to keep our appointed meet- 
ings and to keep our secrets, being taught of God's word that the church of Clirist 
is a garden enclosed, a spring shut up, a fountain sealed; and not to depart from 
one another illegally or without regular dismission; and that we shall, as God gives 
us means, ability, conveniency and opportunity, attend on tlie means of grace, the 
institution of the ordinances of the Gospel, hoping and relying upon Almighty God 
for grace, wisdom and spiritual understanding, guidance and ability to adorn this 
our profession and to perform our duties, hoping that he will bless us with grace 
suitable to our pri\'ileges; which he in his goodness and mercy hath bestowed upon 
us in his house through Jesus Christ our Lord to whom be glory in the Church 
throughout all ages, world without end. Amen. 

Just 15 years after the Sandy Creek Church was constituted, sub- 
scribed to tlie above Covenant and united with the Kehukee Particular 



22 



Baptist Association, the First Baptist Church was constituted and united 
with the Association. There is no indication tliat any other pattern of 
Covenant had been drawn up for the churches constituting the Kehukee 
Association. Therefore, it is only logical to believe that this was the first 
that our church subscribed to. 

It will be noted tliat the first half of it is more a declaration of 
faith than a Church Covenant and that it is mildly Calvinistic. Mild, 
probably because tliere were still some of the old general atonement 
influence in tlie churches, plus the fact that the Kehukee leaders were 
anxious to form union with the Separate Baptists of the Sandy Creek 
Association, who also believed in a general atonement. But it embodies 
"all the principles and articles adopted by the Baptist Association at 
Philadelphia anno Dom 1742," and the Philadelphia Association was 
steeped in Calvinistic predestination and election, as was seen in the 
previous chapter. 

There is no otlier Church Covenant in the record until December 
30, 1894. The minutes of that date, on page 209 gives it. Unlike the one 
above, it is very terse and its authors are unknown: 

Church Covenant 
Adopted in conference December 30, 1894 

The Bible 

We receive the will of God as revealed in the Holy Bible. We believe it 
has salvation for its end, truth without any mixture of error for its matter, and that 
it reveals the principles by which God will judge us in the last great day. There- 
fore, we accept it and adopt it as our only rule of faith and practice. 

Tlie Covenant 

We, the members of the Baptist Church of Christ in Elizabeth City, North 
Carolina, having already covenanted with the triune God by repentance toward 
God, faith in Christ, and by being buried with our Lord in Baptism, do hereby 
covenant with each other to keep all the ordinances and commandments of our 
Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ. We agree to be governed in our personal conduct 
and in our church relations and obligations by the law of Christ as taught in the 
New Testament. We pledge each other to do all in our power to promote the peace, 
unity, and prosperity of this church, and to extend the Kingdom of Christ in all 
the world. 

In the old days the Church Covenant was often read at confer- 



23 



ences. Today, it is about the least read document in our Church reading. 
However, all extant Covenants adopted by the Church are being given 
for whatever historical or other value they may have. The two foregoing 
Covenants are perhaps at two extremes, so far as lengtli is concerned. 
The first one, too long and tedious and much of it irrelevant and rather 
belonging in a treatise on Baptist faith. The second one probably a little 
too brief. 

The next one was authorized to be drawn up in conference on 
January 3, 1901. Some of us still remember the committee appointed for 
this purpose: J. D. Sykes and E. M. Stevens. They were authorized to 
have 500 copies printed for distribution to present and future members 
of the Church; and in all probability this printing was embodied in a 
Manual of the Church that year. Several copies are still in the posses- 
sion of some of our members. This Covenant strikes a happy medium 
between tlie long and short ones above mentioned: 

Covenant 

Having been led, as we believe, by the Spirit of God to receive the Lord 
Jesus Christ as our Savior, and, on profession of our faith, having been baptized 
into the name of the Father, the Son, and the Holy Ghost, we do now humbly and 
thankfully acknowledge ourselves under the most sacred obligations to be the Lord's. 

Relying on the gracious aid of the Holy Spirit, we declare it to be the 
solemn purpose of our hearts to walk together in Christian love, to stri\'e for the 
advancement of this Church in knowledge, holiness and comfort; to promote its 
prosperity and spirituality; to sustain its worship, ordinances, discipline and doctrines; 
to contribute as God may prosper us, to the payment of the expenses of the Church, 
to relief of the needy, and to the spread of the Gospel. We do also confess it to be 
our Christian duty to maintain family and secret devotion, to search the Scriptures, 
and religiously to educate our children; to seek the salvation of our kindred and 
acquaintances, to walk circumspectly before the world, to be just in our dealings, 
faithful in our engagements, and exemplary in our deportment; to attend, as far 
as we are able, the meetings of our Church, and to be zealous in our efforts to 
advance the kingdom of our Sa\'ior. 

We furthermore confess ourselves solemnly bound, as one body in Christ, 
to watch over one another in brotherly love; to remember one another in prayer; 
to comfort one another in sickness and distress; to culti\ate Christian sympathy and 
courtesy; to be slow to take offence, ready for reconciliation and mindful of the 
rules of our Savior to secure it without delay. We moreover engage, that when we 
remove from this place, we will as soon as practicable, unite with some other church 
of like faith, where we can carry out the spirit of this covenant and principles of 
God's Word. Amen. 



24 



"Keep, therefore, the words of this covenant, and do them, that ye may 
prosper in all that ye do." (Deut. 29:9). 

In June, 1911 the church "ordered 1000 copies tc be printed and 
distributed among the members. This Covenant was still in effect in 
1924 when a Church Year Book was published which contained it ver- 
batim. Ten years later another Year Book was published which carried 
a Covenant witli some variations. Just when these alterations were made 
we do not know, but in all probability they were made that year 1934 
when the Year Book was about to be published. This Covenant, as far 
as we know, is the latest one adopted by the church. It is hoped that all 
of these Covenants, particularly this latest one, will inspire us to a greater 
sense of loyalty and devotion to each otlier and, above all, to our Lord. 

Church Covenant 

Having been led, as we believe, by the Spirit of God, to receive the Lord 
Jesus Christ as our Savior, and on tlie profession of our faith, having been baptized 
in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost, we do now, in 
the presence of God, angels and this assembly most solemnly and joyfully enter into 
covenant with one another, as one body in Christ. 

We engage, therefore, by the aid of the Holy Spirit, to walk together in 
Christian love; to strive for the advancement of the Church, in knowledge, holiness 
and comfort; to promote its prosperity and spii^tuality; to sustain its worship, ordi- 
nances, discipline and doctrines; to contribute cheerfully and regularly to the sup- 
port of the ministry, the expenses of the Church, the relief of the poor, and the 
spread of the Gospel through all nations. 

We also engage to maintain family and secret devotions; to religiously ed- 
ucate our children; to seek tlie salvation of our kindred and acquaintances; to walk 
circumspectly in the world; to be just in our dealings, faithful in our engagements, 
and exemplary in our deportment; to avoid all tattling, backbiting and excessive 
anger; to abstain from the sale and use of intoxicating drinks as a beverage, and to 
be zealous in our efforts to advance the kingdom of our Savior. 

We further engage to watch over one another in brotherly love; to remember 
each other in prayer; to aid each other in sickness and distress; to cultivate Chris- 
tian sympathy in feelings, and courtesy in speech; to be slow to take offence, but 
always ready for reconciliation, and mindful of the rules of our Savior to secure it 
without delay. 

We moreover engage that when we remove from this place, we will, as 
soon as possible, unite with some other church of like faith, where we can carry 
out the spirit of this covenant and the principles of God's Word. 

"Keep therefore, the words of this covenant, and do them, that ye may 
prosper in all that ye do." (Duet. 29:9). 

25 



CHAPTER V 

Rules of Decorum 

Surely, if we had the Church minutes from its constitution to 
1857 we would find in them the rules by which its early constituents 
go\'emed tliemselves. They did ha\e a current set of rules in or just 
prior to 1S57 when tradition tells us the Church records were destroyed 
by fire. This is evidenced by the fact that on March 27th, 1857 the 
Church re^'ised them and that re\'ised and adopted edition is in the old- 
est minute book tliat we have: 

Rules of Decorum 
Baptist Church of Christ 

Re\ised and Adopted b>- the Church, March 27, 1857 

Art. 1. All members of the Church shall be requested to meet together once a 
month for the purpose of holding a conference. Meeting in Conference as- 
sembled shall ha\-e full power to transact all business appertaining to the 
Church. 

Art. 2. Conference shall choose a Moderator to preside at all of its meetings whose 
dut\- it shall be to open and close the meetings with pra},'er, and see that 
all the rules are respectfully obser^"ed by all tlie members. 

Art. 3. Conferences shall choose a Clerk, whose dut>' it shall be to make and 
keep a true record of all tire business transacted during its deliberations; and 
such otlier business as the Conference may direct. He shall keep a list of 
names - male and femuile. 

Art. 4. Conference shall choose a Treasurer whose dut>' it shall be to keep all 
tlie monies collected by the Church and pay out the same as directed and 
take a receipt. He shall also make a written quarterly report which, upon 
adoption, shall be recorded on the Church book. 

Art. 5. The Moderator shall open a door for the reception of members by Chris- 
tian experience or letter at each of the regular meetings, and any person 
who may arise to become a member of the Church and shall give satisfactory 
e%'idence of a sound religious experience or a letter of good standing from 
any other church of the same faith and order may be recei\ed by a unanimous 
vote of tlie conference assembled. 

.\rt. 6. All \^-ho shall be recei\"ed by their religious experience for baptism shall 
after being baptized have gi\en to them tlie right hand of fellowship, by 
the Moderator in behalf of the Church. Also, all that shall be received by 

letter. 

.-Vrt. 7. Any member of the Church who may commit an offense against an indi^^d- 

26 



ual member, the offended member shall go to the offender and regain reason- 
able satisfaction. If he shall refuse to hear him, he shall take one or two 
brethren, and if he shall refuse to hear them, he shall be brought before the 
Church and abide the decision of the same. All public offenses shall be 
brought before the Church upon being duly notified by the Clerk. The per- 
son so notified shall appear and make his or her defense. Their non-attend- 
ance shall be considered an acknowledgement of guilt; and they shall be 
dealt with accordingh'. 

Art. 8. We believe and receive the Holy Bible as the inspired Word of God - that 
it re\'eals the principles by which God will judge us in the great days of 
judgement. We therefore recei\"e it as the only true center of Christian imion 
and the only supreme standard of all human creeds and opinions. 

Art. 9. Any member of the Church refusing to believe and practice the doctrines 
as clearly taught by Christ and the Holy Apostles shall be considered dis- 
orderly and shall be dealt with according to the magnitude of the offense. 

Art. 10. All business properly brought before the Church shall be decided by a 
majorit>' of the \"otes gi^■en in conference assembled, except the recei\ing of 
members which must be unanimous. Any member in the minority', who may 
be dissatisfied with the majorit>% shall make the same known at the time - 
and it shall be the dut>- of the Church to gi\e such a respectful hearing and 
use all necessary' means to preserve unit\' in the Body. 

Art. 11. E\er>- motion shall recei\e a second before it becon"ies a subject of de- 
bate or before it is put to the \'Ote of the Church; and no one shall be al- 
lowed to speak more than twice on the same subject without the permission 
of the Moderator. The speaker shall always respectfully address the Moder- 
ator. 

Art. 12. E\er>' member shall bestow annually according to their ability- for the 
support of our pastor, and the necessary' expenses of the Church. And a fail- 
ure to comply with this Christian obligation, shall subject him to Chtirch 
censure; as in any other case of un-Christian conduct. 

Art. 13. It shall be the duty of the Deacons, tlie Treasm-er and the Clerk to hold 
a meeting e\'ery quarter and make out a fiscal state of the Church, and report 
the same at the ensuing conference meeting, at which time they shall adopt 
such measures as may be agreed upon to meet the fiscal demands of the 
Church, so that they shall be properly met. 

Art. 14. The Clerk shall keep a true record of all the names of the members be- 
longing to this Church; and call o\'er the males at each conference meeting, 
and the females quarterly; noting those who are absent, that the Church may 
know who observes and keep the apostles command: "Forget not the as- 
sembling of yoursehes together." 

Art. 1.5. These rules of decorum shall be read in conference once a quarter and 
may at any time be altered or amended by a \ote of two-thirds of the mem- 
bers present. 



27 



Art. 16. No member at conference shall leave during its session without permis- 
sion from the Moderator or the conference. 

Art. 17. The Clerk shall read the minutes of conferences for their consideration 
and adoption. 

Art. 18. The ordained deacons of the Church shall be and are hereby appointed 
as the standing Trustees of the Church Property belonging to this Church. 

Art. 19. Any member of this Church who shall commune with unbaptized believers 
of other denominations shall be considered disorderly, and shall be dealt 
with accordingly. 

Art. 20. As members of this Church we do hereby mutually consent and covenant 
with each other, that we will walk together in brotherly love as becomes a 
Christian Church, watching over each other faithfully and admonishing one 
another as occasion may arise. 

Church minutes show that on June 19, 1873 the word "requested" 
in line one was ordered stricken out and be replaced with the word 
"required." Also, on October 27, 1878 it was ordered that two sentences 
be added after Article 20: "We will pray for each other and encourage 
each otlier to faith and good works. For the world will love its own and 
its own only." 

Anodier historic document is a Church Manual adopted by the 
Church under the leadership of the pastor, Rev. Claude W. Duke, in 
1901 in which appears another lengthy chapter bearing upon the sub- 
ject of rules and regulations which is worthy of preservation. 

Rules and Regulations 

"Let all things be done decently and in order." 1 Cor. 14:40 
Article I 
Officers 
The officers of this Church shall be a Pastor, 12 Deacons, a Treasurer, and 
a Clerk, to be elected by ballot as hereinafter pro\idcd. An open ballot, by unani- 
mous consent of the members present, may be cast as a whole, by one person 
chosen for that purpose. The Pastor, at a special meeting called for that purpose, 
shall be elected to serve indefinitely; and if in balloting for a Pastor, the vote of 
the Church cannot be cast by one ballot, as provided for above, then three-fourths 
of all ballots cast shall be necessary to an election. The Deacons shall be elected for 
a term of three years, four Deacons being elected every year. They and their suc- 
cessors in office shall constitute the legal ti-ustees of the Church, and the title of 
all its property shall be vested in them. Notice of the election of Pastor or Deacons 
shall be made public from the pulpit, on the Sunday immediately, preceding, such 
election. The other officers of the Church shall be elected annually, at the regular 

28 



December Conference, at which meeting the Covenant and Rules of the Church 
shall be read, and a roll of the members of the Church shall be called. At the re- 
quest of the Treasvirer, an Assistant Treasurer may be elected by the Church. 

Article II 
Duties of Officers 

Section 1. The Pastor shall be moderator of all meetings, unless the 
Church orders otherwise. As moderator, he shall appoint all committees, subject to 
the approval of the Church. It shall be his duty to preach statedly to the Church, 
to administer the ordinances of the Church, and perform the other duties incumbent 
upon his office. 

Section 2. The Deacons are to be associated with the Pastor as his coun- 
selors and assistants in the administration of the ordinances; they are to take up all 
collections in the Church, and see that the regular meetings of the Church are ob- 
served; they are in private session, to take notice of all public, and all unsettled 
personal offenses, and make recommendations to the Church in open conference 
for its action. 

Section 3. The Clerk is to keep a faithful register of the membership; re- 
cord all business proceedings of the Churcli; promptly issue all letters of dismission 
granted; prepare all letters to the Association, etc. subject to the approval of the 
Church; and perform such other duties as pertain to his office, including this, that 
when a committee is appointed, he is to furnish the chairman with a copy of the 
resolutions under which they are to act, and a list of the names of the committee; 
and when any member is excluded from the Church he shall notify that person of 
such action. 

Section 4. The Treasurer is to be ex-officio clerk of the Board of Trustees; 
look after the financial interests of the Church; hold all funds not otherwise pro- 
\ided for; keep a careful account of all moneys received and paid out, reporting 
the same annually; and have his accounts audited by the Auditing Committee. 

Article III 

The election of Pastor and odier officers, as well as all business appertain- 
ing to, and promotive of the material interest of the Church, shall be vested in the 
entire membership. When unanimity cannot be reached, a majority vote shall de- 
termine all questions that may arise, including the election of officers and others, 
except in the case of a Pastor, as provided for in Article I, or as hereafter provided. 

Article I J' 

The Church shall meet in conference on the first Sunday in each month to 
transact business appertaining to the Church. The election of all officers, (Except 
Pastor), shall be at the December meeting, and at other times when necessary to 
fill vacancies. Fifteen members, shall constitute a quorum for the transaction of 
business. 

Article J" 

Reception of Members 

Section 1. Any person may be received into the membership of this 

29 



Church: by gi%ing e\"idence of a change of heart, upon Baptism; by Letter of recom- 
mendation and dismissal from other churches of Hke faith and order; by Experience, 
if ha\ing been baptized, and holding membership with no Church, or with that of 
another denomination; by Restoration, if ha\ing been excluded, on confession of 
error, and gi\'ing e\'idence of repentance. 

Section 2. Though candidates for admission are not required to sign any 
creed, confession, or articles of faith, substantial harmony is very important to the 
peace, efficiency and usefulness of the Church, and therefore all applicants should 
be requested to give their consent to the Co\"enant, to which, also, all members are 
expected to conform; to give some e\"idence of familiarity with the scripture teach- 
ing with regard to our distinctive principles; and willingness to abide by these 
specified rules of go\ernment; and no person is to be received who does not give 
satisfactor>' evidence of Christian Character. 

Section 3. In the admission of members the vote shall be unanimous. 
Should objection be made the case shall be postponed and the objection examined. 
If. on inquiring, the Church shall regard the objections based on unchristian prin- 
ciples, they shall be disregarded, and the objector may be liable to the discipline 
of the Church. If otherwise, and tlie objection cannot be overcome, the rule re- 
quiring unanimity- shall be maintained. 

Section 4. All members are expected so far as possible to take part in 
the regular observance of the Lord's Supper. 

Article VI 

Dismission of Members 

Section 1. Members when remo\ing from us, are expected and desired 
to take letters of dismission, and unite at once with some Church of like faith and 
order, if nearer such; and should satisfactor\' reasons exist for not doing so, they 
are expected to report to this Church, through the Pastor, or Clerk, or some other 
member, at least once a year, and to contribute toward its support, if able, till 
membership ceases. 

Section 2. A letter of dismission, granted only to members in full member- 
ship, shall in ever>' instance be addressed to the sister church, with which the 
member wishes to unite, and a duplicate thereof, (with a blank certificate to be 
executed and returned) sent to the Pastor or Clerk of said Church. When this Church 
receives notice of the reception of the said member by the return of the certificate, 
or other\vise that member shall be regarded as dismissed by us. No letter shall be 
valid after six months from its date of issue. 

Article VII 
Discipline 
Section 1. In cases of disagreement between members, it shall be the 
duty of the offended one, first to tell the party giving offense, of the fault com- 
mitted, and endea\or by gentleness and forbearance to effect a reconciliation. Should 
this fail, then to go with one or more brediren or sisters, who shall seek to reunite 
the disagreeing members, and, if these efforts are fruitless, the case shall be laid 
before the Church, for its action and decision. Matt, xviii, 15-17. 

30 



Section 2. In case of continued delinquency, irregular walk, or unbecom- 
ing conduct, coming to the knowledge of any member, it shall be the duty of such 
a one, in the exercise of all proper measures, to seek to reclaim the erring mem- 
ber, and preserve the purity of the Church, or, failing in this to report the same 
to the Deacons, whose duty it shall be to cite the offender to appear before the 
Church to answer the charges. Gal. vi, 1. 

Section 3. In cases of gross and flagrant violation of Christian character 
and deportment, such as the Scriptures forbid us to sanction by any act of clemency 
or indulgence, the offender shall be excluded from the fellowship of the Church; 
unless, there be shown, by humble confession before God and the Church, genuine 
repentance and godly sorrow for the sin committed. II Tlies. ii, 6: Luke xvii, 3-4. 

Section 4. In case of prolonged absence of a member from Church, due 
to uniting with a Church or organization not of our faith and order, or to other 
causes, known or unknown to us, the Church may, by a two-thirds vote, and with- 
out citing such member to appear before it, withdraw the hand of fellowship, and 
direct that the name be erased or dropped from the roll. 

Section 5. In all cases of exclusion and withdrawal of fellowship, the 
member shall be notified by written notice from the Clerk of the Church. 

Article Fin 
Finances 
Forasmuch as giving systematically and regularly to the Lord's work is a 
Christian grace, we should seek to cultivate it according as God has prospered us. 

Section 1. An offering shall be taken at every Sunday service for Pastor's 
salary and Church expenses. 

Section 2. The account of each member shall be accurately kept by the 
Treasurer. 

Section 3. The names of non-contributing members three months in ar- 
rears, unless excused shall be presented to the Deacons, and they shall be subject 
to discipline. 

Section 4. An offering shall be gathered during each celebration of the 
Lord's Supper, for the relief of the poor of the Church. 

Section 5. The Church holds it to be its imperative duty to share the 
pri\ilege of sending the Gospel into all the world. 

Section 6. It is desirable that an accurate account be kept of the aggregate 
bene\olence of the Church, through its various channels, hence it shall be the duty 
of the Pastor and Treasurer, jointly, to ascertain as far as possible, the amount col- 
lected yearly within the congregation for general and specific benevolence, and the 
Treasurer shall report the same in his annual report. 

Article IX 
The Sunday Sclwols and B. Y . P. U. 
The Sunday Schools and Young People's Society shall be under the foster- 

31 



ing care of the Church. The Superintendents, Presidents and other officers, elected 
by the School or Society may be subject to confirmation of the Church, expressed 
by vote. The Superintendents and President shall make annual reports before the 
Church concerning the interests of their work. 

Article X 
Dissatisfaction 

Any person dissatisfied with action of the Church shall make his objection 
known at the time, and all honorable means shall be used to preserve the unity of 
the body in peace. 

Article XI 
Giving 

Each member shall give, according to his or her ability, for the support of 
the Pastor and Church expenses. A failure to comply with this plain Christian ob- 
ligation subjects such person to discipline as does any other case of unchristian 
conduct. 

Article XII 
Amendments, Etc. 

This Constitution or form of government may be altered or amended by a 
\oie of the members present, at a regular business meeting, provided, that notice 
of such alteration or amendment shall have been given in writing, at a previous 
meeting of the Church. 

The meetings for business shall be governed by the rules usually observed 
by deliberati\-e bodies. No member shall speak to the same subject more than twice 
without unanimous consent. 

Church minutes re\'eal, we would say, a fairly strict adherence 
to these, now almost ancient rules and regulations, for many years after 
the latter set was adopted by the Church. How well we observe them 
today we leave to each reader to judge for himself. 



32 



CHAPTER VI 

The Sanctuary 

Not until recent years have we begun referring to our place of 
public worship as the Sanctuary, but we are not alone in this innovation. 
It is true of Baptists generally and of some other denominations also. 
It is long overdue. The term is more explicit and descriptive of a place 
of public worship which is a holy place, a sacred temple or shrine. It is 
a place of spiritual refuge and shelter, set apart from other places of 
Church activity and more particularly from places of secular gatherings. 

At the time our Church was constituted. Baptists and some other 
denominations called their places of worship Meeting Houses and this 
practice continued until roughly around the middle of the last century. 
Some district associations, the Tar River for example, took official action 
to encourage the local congregations to cease the practice. Then they 
began calling the buildings churches and the interiors were known as 
auditoriums. Actually, however, the term Meeting House was more near- 
ly correct than Church because a Church is a body of baptized believers, 
while a meeting house or a building is tlie Church home, a place for 
assembly and worship. An auditorium could be a place for school or 
college assembly; a musical concert, comedy or any other sort of gather- 
ing. The Sanctuary is a place set apart specifically in which the mem- 
bers may assemble for spiritual meditation, singing praises to God, 
prayer and the preaching of the Holy Word. Our Church recognized this 
fact on October 9, 1904 by passing the following motion: "On motion 
the main auditorium shall not be used for any purpose other than the 
regular services . . . except by consent of the deacons by unanimous 
vote or by the consent of the Church in conference." 

In the very early days of Baptist churches in Eastern North Caro- 
lina, occasionally one was organized and met in a member's home, as 
was our mother Church which became known as the Church in the 
house of William Burgess. This was correct terminology. However, for 
accuracy in historical content I shall try to use the terms used in the eras 
of which I write. 

33 



As stated in Chapter I, Baptist ministers preached in this immed- 
iate vicinity, although perhaps very irregularly, for a number of years 
before a Meeting House was erected and the Church was organized. 
These evangelists, more often called itinerate preachers, preached in 
the homes of Shiloh members living here, and their converts took mem- 
bership in that Church. 

First Meeting House 

In order to show the approximate location of this Meeting House 
we quote below the provisional deed granted by Jeremiah Murden; and 
following it the pertinent area of a Clement map drawn previous to or 
during Revolutionary War days showing Nobs Crook creek, the road 
(Now North Road Street and extension), swampy areas, names of family 
farms and other places of military importance to the British in that cru- 
cial period of our country. And, very important to us, in seeing just about 
where our first Meeting House stood. Thanks to Dr. J. D. Hathaway, Jr. 
for allowing us the use of his map: 

Jeremiah Murden To all People to whom Presents shall come. Know Ye that 
. I Jeremiah Murden of Pasquotank County for and in con- 

sideration of the desire of Success of the Baptist Society in 
Ine riaptists Pasquotank County ha\e given and granted to them of that 

Society a certain acre of land belonging to the land common- 
ly known by the name of the Pritchard Plantation over the Rhode near West from 
the Ould Dwelling house Joining the Rhode and a branch so as shall Include a 
meeting House now a building have given Granted aliened and confirmed and by 
these presents do give grant and confirm said land unto the society of the Baptists 
for the use of a meeting House as long as they or any of them shall or will use it 
that way for Ever - To Have & to hold the said Premises with all the Appurtenaces 
to the same belonging to them the Baptis Society that is or may be; for that use for- 
ever, and I the said Jeremiah Murden for me my heirs executors and administrators 
do promise and confirm said bargained Premises as above said to them of the Bap- 
tis Society that is; or may be forever hereafter - 

In Witness whereof I have hereunto set my hand and seal this Thirtyth day of August 
One Thousand seven hundred and Eighty three; August 30, 1783 - 

Signed sealed & Delivered 

In the presents of us Jeremiah Murden (Seal) 

Isaac Smithson 
Testators Arthur Davis 
J. L. Madrin 
Pasquotank County) March Term 1785 
The Within Deed from Jeremiah Murden to the Annabaptist Society was acknow- 
ledged in Open Court and ordered to be Registered 

Registered 16 December 1785 Test Enoch Relfe C.C. 

by J. Lane Rg. 

34 




35 



Now, to pinpoint as closely as possible the site of our first Meet- 
ing House. First, Burkitt and Read, History of the Kehukee Association, 
1803, state that it "is on the road to South Mills, within two miles of 
Elizabeth City." Second, the deed definitely puts it as an acre of land 
belonging to the land commonly known by the name of the Pritchard 
plantation (Shown on the map) and over the road (Which we interpret 
to mean over the road from the Murden place, shown further north 
from Pritchard on the map) near west from the Ould dwelling house, 
joining the road and a branch. The branch, we believe to be Knobs 
Creek. Therefore, it appears to us that the Meeting House stood on the 
west side of the old road and in the corner of the old road and Knobs 
Creek, between the top part of the letter "d" in Pritchard and the old 
road. This would be somewhere in the area now occupied by the Eliz- 
abeth City Brick Company or the Box and Sanders store. Later maps 
show the road crossing the creek further up stream than this map. The 
Pritchard plantation shown on the map is doubtless the same plantation 
that Colonial records reveal "As early as 1714 one James Pritchard ob- 
tained a patent for 280 acres of land lying in Nobbs Creek," and by 1783 
having passed into the hands of Jeremiah Murden, our benefactor. 

As stated above the Murden plantation is across the creek (branch) 
and across the road two or three miles north, probably the area sur- 
rounding the famous "old brickhouse" built, according to Pasquotank 
County Historical Society Year Book II, by Col. Robert Murden, a 
wealthy English lord, some time between 1735 and 1750 - probably the 
father or grandfather of our benefactor. 

It is noted that this Meeting House was under construction on 
August 30, 1783 when the above deed was drawn. Therefore, our Church 
not being organized until 1786, it is very probable the mother Church 
at the request and with the support of her members in this vicinity, 
sponsored the building and preaching station for three years before the 
Church was constituted. 

There is no record to tell us what this Meeting House was like. 
However, judging from the very small membership, the depressed eco- 



37 



nomic conditions of the country at that time and what we do know of 
some other Baptist churches of that day and time, it must have been 
very small and of crude and simple construction. It may even have been 
made of logs. We do not know. 

For the fate of this first Meeting House, the only information we 
ha\e is the memory of Mr. Thomas Overman that his grandmother, 
Susan Perry, had told him of an old Kehukee Church out towards the 
"old Brickhouse" that got burnt. She died in 1889 at about 65 years of 
age. Assuming it was burnt the year or prior to the year the Church 
moved to its present location in 1806, Mrs. Perry would not have been 
born, but she could have been relating to Mr. Overman what her par- 
ents had told her. Or, it is possible the congregation abandoned the old 
building when it moved in 1806 and it stood until Mrs. Perry was born 
and old enough to remember its burning. At any rate, we may believe 
it was burnt. Mr. Ovemian is now 91 years of age but his mind seems 
to be very clear on the subject. Furthermore, his son, Reid, states that 
his father has told him several times when he was much younger than 
he is now of his grandmother's statement to him about the burning of the 
old Church. 

There is no record of any other Baptist Church of any persuation 
having existed in the area described in the deed and map; and the fact 
that Mrs. Perry heard or knew of an old Kehukee Church burning out 
towards the "old brickhouse" should not divert the minds of our read- 
ers to believing that it was some old church other than our own. It, on 
the contrary, proves conclusively that it was our very own, because our 
Church belonged to the Kehukee Association from tlie year of its con- 
stitution to 1805 when the Association divided to form the Chowan the 
following year. If we had remained in the Kehukee and could have sur- 
vi\ ed to this day we would probably be referred to as "an old Kehukee 
Clmrch," just as one of their number in this County is so referred to, al- 
though its real name is Flatty Creek Primitive Baptist Church. 

The one acre of land on which the original Meeting House of our 
Church stood reverted back to the Murden estate when we ceased to use 
it and moved to our present location. 

38 



Second Meeting House 

Our second Meeting House was erected on the west side of the 
lot donated by Mr. Charles Grice, an Episcopalian. Parts of his deed to 
the Church, dated October 1, 1805 are quoted below: 

This indenture . . . between said Charles Grice, Esq. . . . and Thomas 
Etheridge, occasional Pastor, and Bailey Jackson and John Rowe, Deacons of the 
Baptist Church at Knobs Creek . . . witnesseth that the said Charles Grice, Esq., 
from motives of regard for the welfare of religion and in consideration of the sum 
of five shillings . . . hath granted, bargained and sold to . . . the Baptist Church at 
Knobs Creek . . . and their successors in office . . . one piece of ground or two 
hundred and eight foot square, lying and cornering on the Main Street in Elizabeth 
City on the right hand of the street and on the Northeast side of the street; cornered 
on the back of lots . . . sixty-seven and sixty-eight in the plan of the town . . . the 
said 208 feet square to be the exact width of the said lots Number sLxty-seven and 
sixty-eight above mentioned with all the estate and quantity of estate thereof of 
him the said Charles Grice, in and to the said premises, and every part thereof, to 
have and to hold the said one acre of land ... in corporate right, to the only proper 
use and behoof of the said Baptist Church forever. 

The deed was registered on January 13, 1806. 

Dr. E. H. Potts, Pastor, in his Year Book published in 1934 cor- 
rectly stated that "a frame building was erected on the lot." He did, how- 
ever, fall into error in stating that this Meeting House "was used until 
1889." The 1847 Associational minutes which were not available to him 
at that time, contain a brief sketch of the Church by the Associational 
Clerk, Dr. S. J. Wheeler, a physician of Murfreesboro. This sketch was 
made up primarily from the letter which the Church sent that year. He 
states in part: "The Church is destitute of a Meeting House, but hopes to 
be in their new one in three or four months." Delegates to the Associa- 
tion were R. Simpson, G. Jennings and Clerk, W. D. Pritchard. Nothing 
is said in the report or the previous year's report of what became of this 
second Meeting House. We do not know whether it burned, was sold or 
torn down to make room for the new one. Whatever became of it we 
suppose it to have been an improvement over the first one on Knobs Crook 
Creek, but again, there is no known record to tell us what it was like. 

Third Meeting House 

Fortunately this one, erected in 1847, stood long enough that it 
is in the memory of some of our older members and other citizens whom 



39 



we have interviewed. It too, was located on the west side of the lot, 
corner of West Main and Dyer Streets. Those interviewed are in agree- 
ment that it was of wood construction with a steeple and bell on the top 
center in front. However, according to one of our very eldest citizens, 
the steeple could hardly be described as a typical tall, round, tapering 
structure. It was no more than a square structure with a four-sided roof 
just large and tall enough to well house the bell. The Church building 
had one door which was in tlie front center, and entered into a vestibule. 
From the vestibule a door opened into each of the two isles of the audi- 
torium. A balcony was over the vestibule. Windows were of plain glass 
with outside blinds. 

The exterior was painted a dark brown with a sort of redish cast. 
Mrs. G. R. Little, one of the closest neighbors both then and now, re- 
members a large cedar tree between the front door and the sidewalk. 
Worshipers west of the Meeting House had worn a path from the side- 
walk to the front door; and those east of the Meeting House had also 
worn one on diat side. This appeared to protect the tree in a small tri- 
angular shaped plot of ground. There were other trees in the yard and 
the Meeting House was fenced in for many years as is substantiated by 
entries in the Church minutes. At the March 3, 1866 conference it was 
"decided that the brethren would on tlie following Friday meet and trim 
the trees and put up the fences around the Church." Subsequently, on 
a number of other occasions repairs were ordered to the fences and on 
July 21, 1870 repairs were "ordered to the steeple." 

In 1874 a cistern was built for the Church and parsonage for 
$11.00. 

The interior was furnished with benches which were of solid 
boards for the back and seat rather than tlie slat type benches in so many 
of the meeting houses of old time. Yet, they were very uncomfortable 
for a least one member. Dr. R. R. Speed, who did sometliing about it for 
himself and family. On April 24, 1880 he requested and was granted 
"the right and pri\ilege to make the second and third benches from the 
pulpit wider and cushion the same for the use of himself and his family 
when present at Church." 

40 



Mrs. M. G. Wright remembers that a square or near square ros- 
trum at the north end was reached from two sides by one step and it 
was against the straight east to west wall with no alcove or built out 
extension for it. The minutes reveal a post on each side of the pulpit, 
probably lamp posts or ornaments of some sort. The pastor in 1889 was 
C. A. G. Thomas and he for some reason did not like them and on Octo- 
ber 26 "requested and was given permission to remove them." 

How this Church was heated at the first we cannot say, but if gas 
was available then, or when it subsequently became available, it was 
used for some years. This became unsatisfactory for some reason because 
on June 22, 1878 and ironically the longest if not the hottest day in the 
year, a coal stove was ordered purchased and on November 22 another 
was ordered. These were coal burning space heaters as evidenced by the 
fact that only three or four years later "S. Modlin was appointed to pur- 
chase coal and repair the stove." On October 21, 1882 "F. F. Cohoon 
was made a committee to see J. M. Jackson and request that he take the 
gas works out of the Church and sell them at a discount and turn the 
money over to the Treasurer." Tliere apparently was a delay in getting 
them remo\^ed because the minutes of May 24, 1884 show another com- 
mittee was appointed to "remove the gas pipes, sell and turn over the 
proceeds to the Church Treasurer." 

This building was apparently damaged to some extent by fire in 
the early part of 1888 when the parsonage on the east side (On the cor- 
ner) was burned or so badly damaged that it was torn down. The minutes 
show that on March 13, "E. F. Aydlett was appointed a committee to 
collect insurance on the Baptist Church property." Although, Mrs. Little, 
our neighbor both then and now, states that to her knowledge the 
Church did not actually catch aflame; and it could be that the "Church 
Property" referred to was only the parsonage. 

The disposition of this building is an interesting story. On Decem- 
ber 31, 1887 the School Committee (Presumably the Public School Com- 
mittee) offered to "purchase the old Church and ground up the parson- 
age." This was the year before the parsonage which stood on the corner 



41 



was burned. The offer was rejected. At the December 21 conference, 
1890, after the completion of the present sanctuary it was voted to "offer 
the old Church building to the brethren (Our own members living out 
there) at Cartwright's School House (Now a part of the Corinth Church 
parsonage) for the sum of $300.00." But this evidently did not appeal to 
the brethren out there. They wanted to organize into a Church but did 
not want to pay for the building which they and/or their fathers help- 
ed to build. Three months later, March 15, 1891, E. F. Aydlett was ap- 
pointed a committee to advertise it for sale. June 7, 1891, there being 
no sale, the congregation had a change of heart and voted to "give the 
brethren at Cartwright's School House the old Church with the under- 
standing they secure good title to the land they move the Church on." 
This they accepted, and between then and October 18 it was torn down 
and moved as evidenced by the fact that on this date Sam Modlin was 
appointed to have the lot cleaned off. The timbers of this old Church 
are in the present sanctuary of Corinth Baptist Church. 

Fourth and Present Sanctuary 




42 



The earliest photograph we could find of the present sanctuary 
was one by the Economist, local newspaper, in 1904 on the occasion of 
the Baptist State Convention meeting here. (See chapter on Entertain- 
ment of Conventions, etc.) This was after the west annex and missionary 
rooms were attached and in order to show the building as it originally 
appeared it will be noted the west annex and missionary rooms have 
been omitted from the above drawing. The trees are slightly reduced in 
size in order to show the building and grounds as nearly as possible as 
they appeared eighteen years previous. This is a southeast \dew - a north- 
east view as the building appeared upon completion may be seen in the 
chapter on Other Building Programs in connection with the educational 
building. 

First mention in the minutes of the present sanctuary was on 
January 22, 1888 when it was decided to "organize a sinking fund for the 
building of a new Church, and W. T. Love, Sr., Thomas R. Bland and A. L. 
Jones were appointed to count the funds and hand over to the Treasurer, 

E. F. Aydlett." 

On August 25, 1888 "after remarks by the pastor, J. L. White, Sr., 
and others it was resolved to build a new brick house of worship at this 
place. J. L. White, E. F. Aydlett, F. F. Cohoon, James F. Snell and W. T. 
Love, Sr. were appointed a building committee to have full and com- 
plete power to locate, build and contract and pay out the funds that 
come to the Treasurer, etc. J. L. Wliite was made Chairman." Before the 
Church was completed Dr. White resigned as pastor and moved away. 
The next pastor was Rev. C. A. G. Thomas and he was made Chairman. 

It appears that outsiders were invited to assist in raising money for 
the building fund from the fact that on December 1, 1889 T. R. Bland, 

F. F. Cohoon, Miss Florence Bell, W. A. Moody and Mrs. Jennie 
Weatherly were appointed to "visit the citizens of the town in behalf of 
the new Church." However, it does not seem from the record that there 
was much difficulty in raising the necessary building funds because as 
early as May 9, 1889 there was enough money and assurance of success 
in sight that a special cornerstone laying celebration was decided upon 



43 



to take place on July 4, 1889. It was also decided to "invite the Masons 
and Odd Fellows (Secret fraternal orders); and that the cornerstone be 
laid under the ceremonies of these two organizations." A committee on 
management was appointed consisting of the pastor, C. A. G. Thomas, 
Chairman, F. F. Cohoon, W. T. Love, Sr., T. R. Bland, and Elisha Harris. 
Table committee: K. R. Newbold, Chairman, T. S. White, L. A. Jones, 
W. K. Carter, J. R. Pinner, Zephania Burgess, S. S. Davis, J. T. Snell and 
A. B. Seeley. Later ten ladies were added to this committee: Mrs. Nannie 
Dawson, Mrs. Margaret Snell, Mrs. S. F. Bell, Mrs. Ida Simpson, Mrs. 
Barsheba Sanderlin, Mrs. S. D. Scott, Mrs. Robert Simpson, Mrs. Emily 
Pritchard, Mrs. Annie Walker and Mrs. Jennie Weymouth. 

Plans were laid for "serving ice cream, lemonade and soda water" 
as a means of raising money on the day of the celebration and the net 
profit amounted to $165.25 which was turned over to the building com- 
mittee. 

On February 15, 1891 E. F. Aydlett was appointed to sell the old 
pailens in the front fence and one month hence he reported them sold. 

Just when the first service was held in the new house of worship 
does not appear in the minutes but the dedication ceremonies were held 
on May 31, 1891. Camden, Currituck, Yeopim and Scuppemong Union 
Meetings were invited to meet and rejoice with the Church in the dedi- 
cation ceremonies. 

The final report on the building fund is quite interesting. The 
auditing committee consisted of G. D. B. Pritchard, G. W. Brothers, N. S. 
Vowles and T. J. Jordan who made their report on December 27, 1891: 

We have carefully examined the books of the Treasurer and find that he 
has received in various ways the sum of $8,459.81 and that he has disbursed the 
sum of $8,462.59, leaving a balance in his favor of $278.00. We feel that we cannot 
close this report without congratulating both Brother Aydlett and the Church. 
Brother Aydlett for the accuracy with which he has kept so large an account, and 
that extending over a period of three years without the slightest error or discrepancy; 
and the Church for its fortunate selection of so efficient an officer. 

The bell from the old Church was used in the new one until May 
4, 1902 when it was "ordered removed and the new one installed." The 



44 



new bell weighs 1000 pounds and cost $225.00, plus the old bell. Mrs. 
Little remembers, without any criticism of course, Jerry Martin, the sex- 
ton, ringing the bell so long at one time. However, it was not without 
criticism from another source. At the monthly conference on July 15, 
1894 "Moved that the deacons inquire into the cause why the ringing of 
our bell should be more annoying to Mr. Burgess than the other bells in 
town but a short distance further from him." Good old Jerry! The bell 
sounded so good to him; and he apparently delighted in ringing it - 
probably longer than was necessary. 

Albeit, mav we ever ha\'e a bell; and mav its revibrations ring 
in our ears and hearts from one Lord's day to the next reminding us not 
to "forget the assemblying of ourselves togetiier" for divine worship; and 
to keep us in the "straight and narrow path" the other six days of the 
week. It rings for the Christian and for the non-Christian. Its musical 
implications are varied - it calls to worship, it rings out the good news of 
those joined together in holy matrimony and it tolls to remind us that 
"In the midst of life we are in death" and to seek succor in Him "who 
for our sins art justly displeased." 

Having occupied the new Church of which the leaders were just- 
ly proud, they resolved to keep it clean and well protected against filth 
and disfiguration by unthoughtful and indiscriminate churchgoers of 
that day. The first move was even before the dedication ceremonies and, 
coming before the dedication was probably well designed, because on 
that occasion there would be many visitors, both local and out of town. 
On March 1, 1891 "On motion the spittoons be taken out of the Church." 
Actually, they were taken out of the old Church once before but on 
January 21, 1882 "On motion spittoons be placed back in the Church 
immediately." But they went out for good this time. This latest motion 
to remove them was evidently referred to the deacons because fifteen 
days later in monthly conference they offered the following resolutions, 
which were accepted: 

1. That spittoons be remo\ed from the Church (Those who remember them 
say they were made of wood). 

2. That a fine of 50 cents be imposed upon anyone caught spitting upon 

45 



tlie floor and the fine be given to the sexton for cleaning the Church. 

3. That upon the refusal to pay the fine the name of the offender shall 
be read before the congregation. 

Mrs. Kate W. Aydlett, in her notes, wonders "what her grand- 
father, Ehsha Harris, did after the spittoons were removed." The follow- 
ing October 18 he was granted a letter to join at Corinth. 

The second move to protect the new Church was on June 21, 1891 
when the Church Resolved: "Anyone for marking on the pews or the 
walls of the Church and in any way disfiguring the same, be requested 
to pay for the same; $5.00 for the first offense, and upon failure so to do, 
the name of that person be read out in Church and why the fine. For 
the second offense, the deacons carry the same before the Grand Jury." 
Even so, as late as May 3, 1896 the pastor was authorized to offer $50.00 
reward for the apprehension and conviction of the parties who broke 
three windows on the east side of the Church. 

The latest reference to hitching posts and facilities for worshipers 
who came in horsedrawn vehicles was in 1910 but they must have been 
provided several more years after that because automobiles were still 
not plentiful enough to discontinue the hitching posts. 

Many churches of yesteryear thought it necessary to have a large 
clock to hang conspicuously in front of the minister. How much good 
they did in aiding him to end his sermon on time is questionable at this 
distance, but on June 21, 1891 a vote of thanks was extended to Louis 
Selig, local jeweler, for a new clock. Incidently, the congregation could 
not see the clock during the worship services, but some hardy men who 
wanted their Sunday dinners soon after twelve o'clock had another de- 
vice which they sometimes tried - the closed face watch. It was taken 
from the vest or pants pocket and by pressing the stem the lid flew 
open. The closing of the watch made a resounding pop and it did not 
take but a few of them about in the congregation to bring about a gen- 
eral unrest. (Some ministers caught on to the trick, but this writer remem- 
bers one (Not in this Church) who once announced in the beginning of 
his sermon: "Pop your watches as much as you like, it does not bother 
me." 

46 



It was first decided to heat the auditorium with either coal or 
wood-burning space heaters. This was on June 7, 1891, but on the six- 
teenth of August the decision was rescinded and it was decided to heat 
with "hot water." Whatever the hot water system was it lasted only until 
1904 when on October 9 a committee was named to "let contract for 
heating apparatus as early as possible." This was steam heat and provid- 
ed for only the auditorium and was used until the erection of the present 
educational building when a furnace was installed there to take care of 
that building and the sanctuary. 

Lighting was first by kerosene lamps, including two large chan- 
deliers until June 3, 1900 when a committee "on electric lights report- 
ed the work done and a balance due of $51.91," and on the seventh of 
tlie next month the two chandeliers were loaned - one to the Riverside 
chapel and the other to the North Road Street Chapel. The present light- 
ing is indirect and soft, by elegant swinging lanterns. 

Fortunately, there have been no tragic fires or storms to damage 
to a great extent this beautiful structure. There was a small damage to 
the steeple by lightning in 1896 as we learn from the minutes that on 
May three the repair was reported done at a cost of only $6.80. Also, 
there was a near tragedy in 1903. This was by fire but the details are not 
recorded. On December six the Church in conference extended a "vote 
of thanks to the sexton for his care resulting in saving our buHding from 
loss by fire and the Treasurer is directed to pay him $10.00 of the amount 
received from the insurance company." 

Except for the remodeling of the pulpit and choir rostrum, divid- 
ing the chancel, etc. in 1953 and 1954 described in chapter on choir, mus- 
ic, etc., and the swinging doors from the vestibule which were installed 
in 1911, architectural design of the interior is as it originally was, includ- 
ing the high arch over the entrance to the chancel. When the west annex 
was built the original west wall was considerably altered by making 
almost the entire section into stained glass windows to push up and open 
the annex into the sanctuary when needed. However, when the above 
mentioned remodeling of the pulpit and choir rostrums was done, the rest 



47 



of the sanctuary was thoroughly renovated and redecorated and the west 
wall was restored to its original majestic beauty to correspond with the 
east wall and windows. The total cost of remodeling, redecorating and 
waterproofing the sanctuary, pulpit and choir rostrums but not includ- 
ing the work on the organ and new carpet was $28,100.00. 

The high plastered walls are finished in light ivory color and 
contain five beautiful stained glass windows on each side; and the octa- 
gon shaped, paneled wood ceiling; wainscoting, pulpit and lectern, and 
pews are finished in dark walnut color. 

The sanctuary as remodeled and redecorated; together with the 
rebuilt organ, the rooms and other facilities connecting the sanctuary 
with the Educational Building to the north, the baptistry, lectern and 
pulpit, and a number of memorial gifts made during the period of re- 
modeling, etc. (See chapter on Memorials and Special Gifts) were dedicat- 
ed in special services on January 27, 1955. 

Remodeling-redecorating committee consisted of J. H. Moore, 
Chairman, J. C. Abbott, R. L. Garrett, Mrs. S. G. Etheridge, Mrs. H. S. 
Overman, Mrs. D. M. Love, T. O. Bundy, C. P. Harris, Sr., Mrs. W. T. 
Culpepper, Sr., Mrs. W. W. Massey, E. Paul Wise, Mrs. J. C. Prescott, 
Mrs. I. T. Blanchard, Mrs. E. L. Pritchard, E. R. Ferrell and Howard W. 
Morrisette. Following is the body of the Pastor's letter of thanks to the 
committee dated January 17, 1955: 

Dear Friends: 

On the eve of our dedicatory services I am thinking gratefully about each one 
of you. You already know of my enthusiasm and appreciation but I want once more 
to tell you, before the dedication, how happy I am over the lasting contribution you 
have made to our church. Just last Sunday when a large number of visitors came 
to our church to attend a wedding, we heard on every hand what we knew we 
would hear, and will continue to hear through the years, how beautiful indeed is our 
place of worship. I doubt that any church sanctuary in this part of our State is 
more lovely and worshipful than what you have made ours to be. 

For those long hours, those many meetings, called sometimes at short notice 
and under circumstances inconvenient to you, for your planning, your imagination, 
and for your prayerful consecration to your tasks, and for all your generous self- 
giving, I thank you deeply and sincerely. 

W. W. Finlator, Pastor 
48 



Following are interior views of the front and back of the sanctuary, 
showing the new and divided chancel in the front and the balcony in 
the back; also, a reproduction of the order of services used on the Sun- 
day of dedication. (Front view before dividing the chancel is seen in 
chapter 24, Singing and Music): 



4~jrm:?¥* wmRT 




49 




THE ORDER OF THE DEDICATION 

At Eleven O'clock in the Morning 
January 23, 1955 

PRELUDE — "Sinfonia" from a Cantata Bach 

PROCESSIONAL — "The Church's One Foundation" Hymn 584 

CALL TO WORSHIP 

Minister: Serve tlie Lord with gladness. 

People: Enter into his gates with thanksgiving, and into his courts with praise. 

Minister: O come, let us worship and bow down: let us kneel before the Lord 

our maker. 
People: He is our God; and we are the people of his pasture, and the sheep 

of his hand. Amen. 

Here let the people be seated. 

INVOCATION— The Minister 

O God, eternal and ever blessed, who delightest in the assembling of thy 
people in the sanctuary; receive us graciously as we come into thy house, and 
grant, we entreat thee, that peace and prosperity may be found within its 
walls, that tlie glory of God may be the light thereof, and that we may be 
satisfied with the goodness of thy house; through Jesus Christ our Lord. 
Amen. 



50 



COLLECT FOR DEDICATION DAY 

Here let the people unite with the minister in prayer. 

Direct us, O Lord in all our doings, with thy most gracious favor, and further 
us with thy continual help, that in all our works, begun, continued, and ended 
in thee, we may glorify thy holy name, and finally, by thy mercy, obtain 
everlasting life; through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen. 

ORGAN INTERLUDE 

ANTHEM— "Now Thank We All Our God" Mueller 

Chancel Choir 

CANTICLE OF THE CHURCH 

To be said responsi\'eIy by the minister and the people. Here let the people 
stand and remain standing until after the Gloria Patri. 

Arise, shine; for thy light is come, and the glory of the Lord is risen upon 
thee. 

For behold, darkness shall cover the earth, and gross darkness the people. 

But the Lord shall rise upon thee, and his glory shall be seen upon thee. 

And the nations shall come to thy light, and kings to the brightness of thy 
rising. 

The abundance of the sea shall be turned unto thee; the wealth of the na- 
tions shall come unto thee. 

Thy gates shall stand always open; they shall not be shut day nor night. 

That men may bring unto thee the wealth of the nations, and their kings led 
with them. 

For the nation and kingdom that will not serve thee shall perish; yea, it 
shall be utterly wasted. 

Violence shall no more be heard in thy land, wasting nor destruction within 
thy borders. 

But thou shalt call thy walls Salvation, and thy gates thou shalt call Praise. 

The sun shall be no more thy light by day; neither for brightness shall the 
moon give light unto thee. 

But the Lord shall be unto thee an everlasting light, and thy God thy glory. 

Thy sun shall no more go down; neither shall thy moon withdraw itself. 
For the Lord shall be thine everlasting light, and the days of thy mourning 
shall be ended. 

GLORIA PATRI 

SCRIPTURE— I Corinthians 3:10-23 
PASTORAL PRAYER 
CHORAL RESPONSE 

HYMN 591 (first tune) "I Love Thy Kingdom, Lord" Williams 

OFFERTORY— "Dedication" Karg-Elert 

51 



DEDICATION OF OFFERING 

The people standing. 

Bless Thou the gifts our hands have brought; 
Bless Thou the work our hearts have planned; 
Ours is the faith, the will, the thought; 
The rest, O God, is in Thy Hand. Amen. 

ANTHEM — "How Lovely is Thy Dwelling Place" from "Requiem" — 

Chancel Choir Brahms 

THE SERMON — ALL THINGS ARE YOURS The Minister 

ACT OF DEDICATION 

Presentation by the Chairman of the Renovation Committee: 

Mr. Chairman, on behalf of the members of the Renovation Committee who 
have labored with faithfulness and consecration toward the realization of this 
fine hour, and of the generous donors whose gifts have contributed so much to 
the beauty and utility of our sanctuary and church. I hereby present to you 
this chancel, this organ, these memorial gifts and these rooms for dedication 
to the glory of God. 

Response by tlie Chainnan of the Board of Deacons: 

On behalf of the membership of the First Baptist Church of Elizabeth City, 
North Carolina, I hereby gladly and gratefully accept these works of hand 
and heart and purse, and express to your committee the deep and lasting ap- 
preciation of our people. It is our prayerful hope tliat this sanctuary shall in- 
deed be none other than the House of God and the Gate of Heaven to our 
waiting souls. 

The Doxology (the people standing) 

Then the minister shall say, the people responding: 

To the glory of God the Father, who has called us by his grace; 
To the honor of his Son, who loved us and gave himself for us; 
To the praise of the Holy Spirit, who illumines and sanctifies us; 

We dedicate this sanctuary. 

For the worship of God in prayer and praise; 
For the preaching of the everlasting gospel; 
For the celebration of the ordinances; 

We dedicate this sanctuary. 

To the cultivation of a high art: to the interpretation of the message of the 
masters of music, to an appreciation of the great doxologies of the Church, and 
to the development of the language of praise which belongeth both to earth 
and to heaven. 

We dedicate this organ. 

For the comfort of all who mourn; 
For the strength to those who are tempted; 
For light to those who seek the way; 

We dedicate this lectern. 

For the hallowing of family life; 
For teaching and guiding the young; 
For the perfecting of the saints; 

52 



We dedicate these rooms. 

For the conversion of sinners; 
For the promotion of righteousness; 
For the extension of the Kingdom of God; 

We dedicate this pulpit. 

In the unity of the faith; 
In the bond of Christian brotherhood; 
In charity and good will to all; 

We dedicate this baptistery. 

In gratitude for the labors of all who lo\'e and ser\'e this church; 
In loving remembrance of those who have finished their course; 
In the hope of a blessed immortality through Jesus Christ our Lord; 

We dedicate these gifts. 

Then shall the ministers and people together say; 

We now, the people of this church and congregation, compassed about with 
a great cloud of witnesses, grateful for our heritage, sensible of the sacrifice of 
our fathers in the faith, confessing that apart from us their work cannot be 
made perfect, do dedicate ourselves anew to the worship and service of Al- 
mighty God; through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen. 

Here let the people be seated; Then shall the minister say: 

Accept, O God our Father, this service at our hands, and bless it to the end 
that this congregation of faithful people may make manifest the Church of the 
living God, the pillar and ground of truth, and so may this house be the place 
where thine honor dwelleth and the whole earth be filled with thy glory; 
through Jesus Christ our Lord. 

HYMN 221— "Our God, Our Help in Ages Past" William Croft 

SILENT PRAYER 

BENEDICTION 

CHORAL RESPONSE 

POSTLUDE— "Andante" from "Fourth Organ Concerto" Handel 



CHORAL AND COMMUNION VESPER SERVICE 

At Four-thirty O'clock in the Afternoon 
May Jesus Christ be Praised ! 

PRELUDE— "Sabbath Bells" Edmundson 

"Holy Spirit, Light Divine" Purvis 

PROCESSIONAL— "Joyful, Joyful, We Adore Thee" Hymn 211 

THE WORD OF GOD 

"Create In Me A Clean Heart, O God" Mueller 

53 



THE RESPONSE OF GRATEFUL PEOPLE— 

Responsive Reading Number 121 

"Once to Every Man and Nation" York 

THE WORD OF GOD 

HYMN 583— "Glorious Things of Thee Are Spoken" Haydn 

"Hear My Prayer" Mendelssohn 

PRAYER 

CHORAL RESPONSE— "Prayer Without Words" Jones 

THE OFFERING 

Offertory — "Air" from Tenth Organ Concerto Handel 

"I Believe, O Lord" Saint-Saens 

"Beautiful Savior" Arr. Christiansen 

HYMN 599— "Here at Thy Table, Lord" Sherwin 

THE ORDINANCE OF THE LORD'S SUPPER 

"How Lovely Is Thy Dwelling Place" from "Requiem" Brahms 

THE ORDINANCE OF BAPTISM 

"O Magnify the Lord With Me" from the Bay State Collection — 

Arr. Lynn 

BENEDICTION 

CHORAL RESPONSE— "Tlie Lord Bless You and Keep You"— Lutkin 

POSTLUDE— "Toccata" from Fifth Organ Symphony Widor 

Carpeting, not even "runners" down the isles of either of the 
former Meeting Houses, was probably never dreamed of as a possibility. 
But in 1892 the congregation was in a new one and the people were 
more conscious of non-rubber heel shoes clomping on the hard plank 
floor, and the need for quietness and beauty to prevail in its place of 
worship. So, on June 19 "a committee of sisters were asked to take in 
hand the carpeting of the Church, but to first read the rules about fairs, 
festivals, etc." This committee was probably instructed only to start rais- 
ing money, and somehow, without the use of fairs, festivals, etc. because 
on the following September 5, 1892 another committee was appointed 
"to ascertain the cost," who on the twenty-third of the next month report- 



54 



ed that it would "cost $175.00 to carpet the isles and rostrum and $310.00 
to carpet the entire Church with Brussells carpet. It was voted to car- 
pet the whole Church." 

By November 27, 1901 this carpet was probably badly worn and 
it was ordered on that day to be placed in the Sunday School room. We 
may assume new carpet was bought but no further record appears until 
February 2, 1910 when "the ladies (Ladle's Aid) were requested to select 
and buy a carpet which they had found they could buy at 70 cents a 
yard, laid." This was a rich dark red, wall-to-wall carpet which was 
used until the present one, a beautiful wine colored one, was laid in 1954 
at a cost of $6000.00. 

The sanctuary today is simple, yet everything in it is conducive 
to divine worship excelled by few sanctuaries of any denomination. It 
tells eloquently of the new design for divine worship being introduced 
in many Baptist sanctuaries today. It has moved from the ordinary and 
all-purpose auditorium to the sanctuary. Who, of a troubled mind can 
enter without receiving solace and comfort? Who of a sin-sick soul can 
enter without feeling a need for healing, and receive it, if he will but 
surrender to the Architect of salvation for every willing soul? Who of a 
grateful and joyous heart can enter without bursting forth with those of 
kindred mind in singing the hymns of praise and adoration to his God? 



55 



CHAPTER VII 
Additional Buildings 

Neither of our previous sanctuaries had any auxiliary buildings or 
other rooms. The present one originally had two small rooms on the 
north end — one on each side of the pulpit and baptistry. Outside view 
of tliis space may be seen below in connection with the educational 
building. However, in less than three years after its dedication plans 
were well under way for the present west annex to be erected. 




The first efforts were initiated by that great leader, Mr. E. F. Ayd- 
lett. On Sunday morning, January 15, 1893 "On motion of E. F. Aydlett 
a committee of se\'en was named to consider the cost and advisibility 
of building a Sunday School room as early as possible. Committee: J. F. 
Snell, E. F. Aydlett, G. W. Brothers, F. F. Cohoon, W. T. Love, Sr., M. N. 
Sawyer and T. J. Jordan." "On motion Dr. C. S. Blackwell, pastor, was 
added and made Chairman." This committee reported on February 19, 
1893 "That: first, the room is greatly needed; second, we are financially 



56 



able to build it this year; third, if built it should be across the north end 
of the Church and about 73 x 45 feet; fourth, the cost of such a building 
would be about $2,500.00." "On motion it was decided to take steps at 
once to have the room built, and 8818.00 were pledged." A soliciting com- 
mittee was appointed to get additional pledges and reported on June 
12 "72 more people had pledged an additional 8434.25. 

There is no explanation in the minutes as to why the annex was 
built on the west side of tlie Church rather than on the north end as 
recommended by the committee, but obviously, one reason was that it 
might be opened up to take care of overflow congregations from the 
auditorium of the Church; because tlie wall on that side of the auditor- 
ium was converted almost entirely into stained glass windows which 
could be pushed up. Construction apparently moved at a rapid pace and 
on November 19, 1893 the Church decided to borrow $675.00 to "meet 
the last payment on what was then termed the annex." 

Desiring to put the annex into maximum use it was voted on Octo- 
ber 10. 1895 "to open it to the public as a reading room" as well as con- 
tinuing to use it as a Sunday School room. 

Electric lights were installed in 1902. This large room nor the two 
smaller rooms later added to tlie south and the three north of it were 
ever connected to the central heating plant of the Church auditorium 
but were heated by coal-burning space heaters until just a few years ago 
when oil-burning space heaters were installed. It and the two remain- 
ing south rooms (The north rooms were finally torn do\vn - when the 
Educational Building was erected) were air conditioned about three 
years ago by an anonymous donor. 

The second addition of rooms was the present two above mention- 
ed rooms to the south of the annex. On March 9, 1902 "A committee 
from the Sunday School asked for an enlargement of capacity for the 
Sunday School." A committee composed of E. F. Aydlett, Noah Bur- 
foot, Sr., G. D. B. Pritchard, J. H. LeRoy, Sr., and F. L. Garrett were 
appointed to suggest plans and estimates. They reported on April 6, 1902 
with the "recommendations that: first, we build; second, we raise 



57 



$1,200.00 for that purpose and third, we begin at once." The matter was 
tabled until April 13, 1902 at which time it was adopted, "to begin when 
$1,200.00 is raised." There was possibly some difficulty experienced in 
raising the money because not until September 14, 1902 were the plans 
ordered drawn by the deacons. Then in April, 1903 "certain changes in 
the plans were recommended which the committee thought were need- 
ed and which would run the cost up not to exceed a total of $2,000.00 for 
the building and changes." Not until April 3, 1904 did the committee re- 
port "the work done and building received ..." and there was still some 
$600.00 in bills unpaid. The final report showed a total cost of $2,086.80. 
The concrete walk from the side walk to the south entrance to these 
rooms and the west annex was laid in 1907 at a cost of $37.10. 

From the architectural design, aging of brick, etc. one does not 
notice that the annex and these two adjoining rooms to the south were 
erected several years apart. The accompanying photograph shows the 
annex erected in 1893 and the two rooms in the corner of the annex and 
the Church sanctuary. The peak of the educational building erected in 
1928 can be seen over the annex. 



I 




58 



There is little in the minutes concerning the third building pro- 
gram for the Sunday School. On April 2, 1905 "Upon a statement from 
the Sunday School (E. F. Aydlett, Superintendent) as to the pressing 
need of another room, the Sunday School is authorized to build another 
room." There is nothing more in the minutes concerning it but fortunate- 
ly some of our members remember when it was erected. Mr. S. J. Twine 
remembers helping with its construction; that it was a shed style roof 
extending across the entire north side of the west annex. It turned out 
to be three rooms instead of one, connecting with folding doors and 
each room opened into the auditorium of the annex. This additional space 
was so arranged and furnished that it was used not only for Sunday 
School rooms but was considered the Church parlors also. 

When the present educational building was erected in 1928 these 
rooms were torn down and signs are still visible where they were con- 
nected to the annex. 

The educational building was our fourth and by far the largest 
building undertaking by the Church. It was envisioned and talked for 
nine years before its fulfillment. First reference in the minutes is on De- 
cember 31, 1919. "W. T. Love, Sr., W. L. Cohoon, P. S. Vann, Dr. S. W. 
Gregory (Dentist) and J. W. Johnson were appointed a committee to 
consider the matter of providing improved facilities for our Sunday 
School work and report to the Church at as early date as practicable." 
The record shows no activity whatsoever of this committee, but the dea- 
cons, the Sunday School Superintendent and the pastor did keep the 
matter before the Church. 

On March 3, 1920 the deacons recommended "We attempt to 
create a fund for needed expansion to our physical plant - particularly 
to meet the needs of the Sunday School. Adopted." October 2, 1921 
"Recommendation from the deacons that we use the main auditorium of 
the Church for opening and closing the Sunday School and that the 
present Sunday School room annex auditorium be subdivided by means 
of curtains. Adopted." This was of course to take care of classes, for 
there were only five separate classrooms at that time. On October 21, 



59 



1923 "Recommendation by tlie deacons to begin at an early date to make 
provisions for this work commensurate witli its importance and a com- 
mittee be appointed to secure plans and estimates of cost and submit 
to the Church." The minutes do not state whether the recommendations 
were adopted or not, but there is no record of the committee being nam- 
ed nor a report from such a committee. 

In his report made to the Church on January 4, 1925 for the year 

1924 Calvin H. Twiddy, Sunday School Superintendent, stated in part: 
"May I remind you again how seriously handicapped we are for the lack 
of sufficient building space and proper equipment . . . Our classrooms 
are overcrowded . . . I . . . leave this question on your hearts. Are you 
interested? If you are we trust you will awaken to our opportunity and 
provide us with the necessary physical equipment." At this same confer- 
ence the pastor, Dr. Samuel H. Templeman, "Again urged the Church 
to begin as soon as plans are drawn." 

On the 6th day of March, 1925 a special act of Legislature (See 
chapter on Cemetery) was ratified authorizing the Trustees to build over 
a corner of the graveyard and in accordance with the requirements 
therein the Church minutes of March 24, 1925 read: "Public notice made 
that the new Sunday School room would be built over where the graves 
are and asking people if they wish to move any of the bodies to plan to 
do so by May 10, 1925." 

On January 17, 1926 there was adopted a recommendation from 
the deacons that the "old committee be discharged and the following 
appointed: J. G. Gregory, M. P. Jennings, P. S. Cohoon, W. T. Culpepper, 
Sr., W. T. Love, Sr., Dr. S. W. Gregory, Mrs. J. L. Pritchard (Now Mrs. 
M, G. Wright) and Mrs. S. H. Templeman." Jennings was made chair- 
man and in his report to the Church on January 1, 1928 he stated that 
the plans had been drawn by the architect, Leslie M. Boney of Wilming- 
ton, N. C, and that they had been submitted to Dr. P. E. Burroughs, 
Architectural Secretary, Southern Baptist Convention, who had approved 
them. Mr. Jennings hoped "to begin construction early in the spring." At 



60 



the April 20, 1928 conference it was reported that the lowest bid was 
$57,000.00 by John W. Hudson, Jr. of Tarboro, N. C. This did not include 
a new boiler. The committee was instructed to proceed with the build- 
ing. Ground breaking was in June, 1928 and in his report to the Church 
on January 6, 1929 Mr. Jennings stated "the most outstanding achieve- 
ment for the year (1928) was the Sunday School Building." The name was 
soon changed to Educational Building because it was capable and did 
house other phases of our total Christian Education Program. One month 
later, February 5, 1929, the building was accepted from the architect. 

The building was financed mainly by a $50,000.00 loan from the 
Jefferson Standard Life Insurance Company on December 1, 1928 and 
the note was secured by a deed of trust of even date to Julian Price, 
Trustee, conveying real estate (Church property) in Pasquotank County 
and endorsed by the following deacons and trustees: J. G. Gregory, C. F. 
Garrett, E. M. Stevens, P. D. Twiddy, R. L. Garrett, S. E. Williams, C. P. 
Harris, Sr., J. B. Anderson, M. P. Jennings, J. L. Pritchard, Dr. I. A. 
Ward (Physician), S. G. Scott, Sr., P. C. Cohoon, C. H. Twiddy and W. T. 
Love, Sr. 

In addition to the deed of trust on the back of it is the following 
document: 

"We the undersigned endorsers of this note, herewith waive presentment 
for payment, notice of non-payment, dishonor and protest, and agree to remain and 
continue bound for the payment of same; notwithstanding any extension or exten- 
sions for the time of payment, any change or changes in the amount of payment, 
and waive notice of extension, extensions, change or changes." 

This document was endorsed by J. G. Gregory, P. D. Twiddy, R. 
L. Garrett, S. E. Williams, J. B. Anderson, M. P. Jennings, J. L. Pritchard, 
Dr. I. A. Ward and S. G. Scott, Sr. All in addition to their endorsements 
as deacons and trusteees. It was further endorsed by Wiley Upton, E. E. 
Hollowell, G. R. Swindell, F. T. Horner, S. C. Newbold, Noah Garrett, 
G. A. Twiddy, J. H. LeRoy, Sr., Kenyon Bailey, R. L. Griffin, G. H. 
Payne (Pastor), T. S. Hughes, J. J. Wliite, Sr., E. G. Scott, Dr. W. A. 
Hoggard (Physician), J. M. LeRoy, V. E. Gregory, Zenas Jennings, C. E. 
Bailey, J. L. Gregson, C. C. Bailey, H. B. Sedberry, J. J. White, Jr., and 
Mrs. R. C. Abbott. 

61 



Then came the world-wide financial depression with almost the 
entire debt upon the Church. For several years it was all the Church 
could do to pay the interest. But by February 11, 1943 the principal was 
down to $24,000.00 and on this date the amount was borrowed from the 
Elizabeth City Guaranty Bank. The amount was paid to the Jefferson 
Standard whose note was marked paid on February 16, 1943. The Gua- 
ranty Bank note was for 30 days and was endorsed by J. C. Abbott, D. M. 
Love, W. T. Love, Jr., E. E. Hollowell, H. L. Jackson, R. L. Garrett, 
Thomas Whaley, R. L. Griffin, M. P. Jennings, E. R. Ferrell, C. P. Harris, 
Sr., and Selby Scott. The amount was raised by the Church and paid to 
the bank on March 12, 1943. 

Total cost to the Church including interest on borrowed money 
was close to $100,000.00. The building stands north of the sanctuary and 
was originally connected by a ten or fifteen foot, glassed-in breezeway. 

The furnace in the basement furnishes heat for both this building 
and the sanctuary. From the outside appearance one might be deceived 
into believing the building to be four stories high, from the four rows 
of windows, but the top short windows give light to a balcony which 
extends around the west, north and east sides of the third floor. Each 
floor contains a spacious hall on the south side and one at each end 
between the assembly room and the classrooms. In addition to assembly 
and classrooms it has a fully equipped kitchen, rest-rooms. Pastor's study 
and Secretary's office. 

The fifth and last building program was begun in 1953 and com- 
pleted in 1954. This was to fill in and utilize more space between the 
sanctuary and the educational building than the original ten or fifteen 
foot breezeway. The building has two stories. The first floor consists 
of the Church parlor which serves also as a passageway from the ed- 
ucational building to the sanctuary and the west annex, two choir and 
baptismal dressing rooms and two rest-rooms, as well as furnishing space 
for the deepening of the chancel. The second floor provides two lovely 
offices, one for the Minister of Music and the other for the Educational 



62 



Secretary. A part of the east side of this building as well as half of the 
Educational Building can be seen in the picture below. 




63 



CHAPTER VIII 

Pastors 

We have been unable to find any record of who our pastor was 
for the first 17 years of the Church's history. As stated before we have 
no church minutes for that period of time. The Kehukee and Chowan 
Associational minutes give no information on the subject. We had hoped 
that the deed to our first site would give the name of a pastor, but when 
found we were again disappointed. Elder John Asplund, a Virginian who 
traveled in Eastern North Carolina in 1793, gathering Baptist data stat- 
ed in his Register "the Church is without a settled pastor." 

The first recorded information concerning a pastor is in Burkitt 
and Read's History of the Kehukee Association (1803). They state that 
"Elder Thomas Etheridge usually administers the ordinances." Whether 
he had performed this function since the Church's constitution in 1786 
is a matter of conjecture. It is possible, because he was an ordained 
minister at the time of constitution and a member of the mother Church. 
It is also possible that Elder Henry Abbot, pastor of the mother Church, 
preached occasionally and administered the ordinances for two or three 
years after constitution, but at that time he was becoming feeble with 
old age and died in 1790. It would be a better guess that Elder Etheridge 
was depended upon by the Church for this function when it was pos- 
sible for him to do so. There is no clue whatsoever of any other than 
Abbot and Etheridge. In his capacity of usually administering the or- 
dinances as early as, if not earlier than 1803, Etheridge is recorded below 
as the first pastor. The fact that Asplund stated in 1793 that they are 
without a settled pastor does not deny that Etheridge was administering 
the ordinances at that time, and in so doing could be considered the pas- 
tor. The deed to our present site dated October 1, 1805 refers to him as 
occasional pastor. He continued as pastor until his death in May, 1810. 

If, indeed, Etheridge was occasional pastor if only to administer 
the ordinances, for the first 22 or 23 years of the Church's history we 
must say that being the busy evangelist that he was his services at times 
must have been quite patchy and in all probability the last year or two 

64 



before he died he rendered practically no service at all because of ill 
healtli, during which time it is very probable that Elder John Rowe 
supplied the pulpit for him. 

Elder Etheridge's biographers, appointed by the Association, one 
of whom was John Hamilton, a member of the Church, give us the fol- 
lowing account of his life and works which apeared in the Chowan As- 
sociational minutes of 1810: 

Biographical Sketch of Elder Thomas Etheridge 

Elder Thomas Etheridge was born in 1732, in the county of Currituck; des- 
cended of poor, but honest parentage. He received Httle or no education except 
such as he acquired from dint of his own appHcation. 

In 1777 he was awakened to a view of his lost state. His first convictions were 
of a sharp and severe nature, but being brought by the grace of God to a believing 
view of Christ, and a sweet reliance upon his blood and righteousness; he was bap- 
tized by Elder Henry Abbot in Pasquotank River, and joined the Camden Church. 
He now felt strong impressions to preach the gospel. But being sensible of his want 
of qualifications, and having many doubts with respect to his call to the work, he 
passed through great and sore conflicts, which continued for nearly three years. But 
at length, having a clear and affecting view of his fellow-creatures, sinking under 
all the wrath of God, he could not longer hold his peace; and in 1782 in the 30th 
year of his age, he began to preach in public. He now found much inward com- 
fort. His soul was so much in the spirit of preaching, that he, often leaving his 
family and all behind, would start right off for six or seven weeks together, preaching 
often three times a day. 

Amidst these his first exercises he was frequently attacked in the pulpit; 
and in the upper part of Camden County, his life was once endangered, under the 
hands of the old Church-men; from these he underwent great and severe trials; In 
Princess Ann County, Virginia, he v/as once attacked by a mob, and threatened to 
be pulled down from the trunk of a tree on which he stood, and beaten, for the 
offense of being a Baptist preacher. 

In 1785 (Following is a footnote by the editor of the Associational minutes 
carrying the biography: *It appears that Elder Etheridge was not ordained until he 
had been preaching three years. In those days candidates were seldom ordained 
upon .shorter trial. But how is it now? Is it not time for us to pause? Hasty and pre- 
mature ordinations are dangerous things. Lay hands suddenly on no man). 

He was ordained by Elders Henry Abbot, Philip Hughes and Joshua White, 
and soon after became Pastor of the church at Sawyer's Creek, Camden County; and 
occasional Pastor of the churches at Knobscrook, Cowenjock and Powell's Point, 
besides preaching statedly at Flatty Creek and Norfolk. He was a great lover of 
Associations and other great meetings, and profited much by the society and con- 
versation of his brethren in the ministry. His trials were many, but his usefulness 
was great, and for many years "His praise was in all the churches." 

65 



Towards the close of his life he was greatly affected with asthmetic and 
hypochondriac complaints. Through the violence of the latter he was sometimes 
plunged into great improprieties; by which in the estimation of some, the man was 
unmanned and the minister ruined, grievous indeed, was his situation at times: Nor 
is it by any means proper to attempt to justify him in those things which he himself 
criminated, and over wliich he so heartily mourned, and that penetrated his in- 
most soul with much lively grief; for after the body was reduced, and the whole 
system weakened; this terrible complaint lost its power, and ceased to operate in its 
former violence. The soul then recovered itself, and the powers of the mind returned 
to their former course. It was then he gave to the minister who visited him a little 
before his death satisfactory evidence of his sincere penitence, and lively hope in 
Christ. He said: "I shall surely die, and that in a short time, but blessed be the God 
of all grace, my hope in Christ remains firm; I cannot, I dare not doubt, but O my 
grief is, I have brought up an evil report of the good land; I have wounded the 
Lord Jesus in the house of his friends." At tliese words it seemed as if his heart 
was ready to break, and the big tears rolled plentifully down his pale cheeks. "Could 
it ha\e been the will of God," he said, "for me to have died before I had disgraced 
my profession, and dishonored his holy name! And yet to one so vastly unworthy 
he affords the sweet intimations of love divine. His love amazes and overwhelms 
my soul. O the mighty power, and sovereign freeness of divine Grace." 

On the third day of May, 1810, on the eve of the Association convening at 
Camden Old Meeting House, he breathed his last, affording hopeful evidence that 
he died in faith, and departed in peace. 

According to his request. Elder John Row on the afternoon of the next day 
preached his funeral sermon, and his mortal remains were laid in the family burying- 
grounds near his own home. 

Second Pastor was John Rowe, Sr. (Sometimes in the record spell- 
ed Row). Through the courtesy of Miss Fannie Lee West we have some 
valuable information on Rowe which we give below. Parts of it is ap- 
parently in his own handwriting in a Bible which he bought at Willis 
Sawyer's vandew for $18.75. The Bible was published in 1806 and bought 
originally by Sawyer. Sawyer's family record is in it, and when Elder 
Rowe bought it he recorded in it his own family record. Miss West's 
great grandfather, James Casey, bought the Bible probably either at 
Elder Rowe's or some of his people's vandew sale and recorded his fam- 
ily record in it, dating back to 1745. The Rowe record in abridged form 
is given below: 

Bwths 

John Rowe, son of Dempsey and Charity Duffey Rowe. was born March 
14, 1775. His wife, Sarah, daughter of Robert and Nancy Raper, was bom May 4, 
1783. To the union was born nine daughters and one son: Nancy, born September 14, 
1799; Peggy, March 12,1802; Rebecca, January 26, 1804; Susanna, September 10, 

66 



1806; PoUey, September 30, 1808; Salley, May 9, 1811; Elizabeth, September 20, 
1813; Martha, February 25, 1816; Luraney, July 11, 1818 and John, October 7, 1819. 

Marriages 

John Rowe, Sr. - Sarah Raper, December 27, 1798. Rebecca Rowe - Micajah 
Chancy (Date of marriage not given) and to them was born tvvo children: Sarah Jane, 
February 18, 1824, and Edmond, December 25, 1825. Nancy Rowe - Thomas Mullen, 
May 4, 1815. Susanna Rowe - William Stafford (Date not given). 

Deaths 

Charity Duffey, mother of Elder John Rowe and others, October 10, 1808. 
Zachariah Rowe, brother of Elder John Rowe, Sr., September 10, 1809. David 
McPherson (Probably an in-law or other close relative of the family) February 4, 
1816. Luraney Rowe, July 21, 1818. Elder John Rowe, May 26. 1821, while pastor 
of the Church. John Rowe, Jr., September 4, 1823. 

Conversion, Baptisfii and Ordination 

John Rowe, his book, bought of Willis Sawyer's vandew. Price $18&75. 

John Rowe and Salley (Sarah), his wife, was baptized the 12 day of Septem- 
ber, 1803, himself professes to have been awakened to a knowledge of the truth in 
September, 1800 - and his wife professes to have been awakened to a knowledge of 
the truth May, 1803. Shortly after said Rowe was baptized and became a member 
of Nobs Creek Church, he was called on by said Church to the e.xercise of his gifts 
in publick - and in the year of 1806, he was called and licensed to the work of the 
ministry of tlie Gospel of Christ - and in the year 1808 he was called on to be or- 
dained and take the oversight of the Church at Elizabeth City and was ordained 
by the hands of Elders, viz: Thomas Etheridge and William Dossey and William 
Lorey. 

Within two years after his baptism, Rowe became a Deacon and 
his name appears as such in the Charles Grice deed to the present site of 
the sanctuary. We are not given the month and day of his ordination 
to the ministry but it was probably tlie latter part of 1808 because the 
Chowan Associational minutes give his name as pastor of the Church in 
1809 for the first time. His name is also given for the year ISIO. Then he 
alternated for several years with Thomas Weymouth. 

1811 Thomas Weymouth. We first find him as a lay delegate to 
the Chowan Association in the 1807-1809 sessions. In 1810 he is shown 
as a licentiate and the 1811 minutes report him as an ordained minister 
and pastor of the Church. These dates coincide with the following sketch 
found in the May, 1818 Associational minutes, except that his biographers 
were probably mistaken in saying that he never consented to take the 
pastoral care of any church: 

67 



Elder We>anouth was born March 1st, 1757, in the count>' of Pasquotank, 
North Carohna. He hoped tliat he had obtained a manifestation of the \o\e of God 
to his soul in tlie 34th year of his age, and was baptized tlie 14th of March, 1791, 
by Elder Silas Mercer, and ga\e himself a member of the Baptist Church at Knobs 
Creek. He began to exercise his gift in a public way in 1804; was licensed to preach 
in 1809, and his ordination took place tlie 27th of April, 1811, by Elders Pendleton 
and Rowe. He was a kind neighbor, an affectionate husband, and a tender father; 
and though he ne\er consented to take the pastoral care of any church, he appeared 
to be heartily engaged in preaching the blessed gospel of Christ to his fellow-men. 
This man of God departed this life on the 2nd of October, 1817, in the 61st year 
of his age. The loss was sensibly felt by the Church at Elizabeth City, where he 
was a member, and b>" neighboring churches. 

Da\id Benedict. History of the Baptist Denomination, Volumn II, 
1813, states that when tlie Church represented in the Association meet- 
ing at Wiccacon (Now Colerain) in 1811 Thomas Weymouth was pastor. 
The minutes for tliat year also report him tliere as pastor and delegate. 

1812-13 John Rowe. 

1814 Thomas Weymouth. 

1815 John Rowe. 

1816 it is difficult to detennine from the Associational minute 
whether Rowe or Weymouth was pastor. They were both present and 
listed as ministers and messengers. Neitlier was designated as pastor, but 
we are reasonably certain that one of them was. 

1817-1821 John Rowe. It appears the pastorate was terminated by 
his death. 

For the >'ears 1822-24 the Church was probably without a pastor 
Lay messengers represented the Church at each session of the Associa- 
tion and no minister or pastor is listed for tliese years. 

1825 Jeremiah Etheridge, probably a Currituck County native. He 
was pastor of the old 1780 Co^^'en]■ock Church (Not the present 1893 
Coinjock Church) for several years before becoming our pastor. We do 
not know that he was related to our first Pastor, Thomas Etheridge, but 
being a Currituckian he could have been his son or younger brother. In 
1822 while pastor at old Cowenjock he wrote the Circular Letter for the 
Association, which Dr. George W. Paschall, Histor>^ North Carolina Bap- 

68 



tists, described "both in style and content is among the best of its kind." 
He preached the introductory sermon at the Association in 1825. 

1826 Joshua Benton. Notes made from a study of the Associational 
minutes for this year reveal no ordained minister or pastor, but Dr. J. T. 
Riddick, in his sketch of the Church, gives this name as pastor and we 
accept it. No further record is found of him but the name is still one 
common to this community and he probably was a native. 

1827 Associational minutes reveal no pastor and Dr. Riddick states 
"The Church was without a pastor." 

1828 Jeremiah Etheridge. 

1829 Associational minutes list only one minister in the Church. 
James Nash represented the Church as an unordained minister. Dr. Rid- 
dick believed he was acting as supply minister which is probably correct 
since there is no record of an ordained minister or pastor. 

1830 William Doxey. Here Dr. Riddick fell into error by listing 
Jeremiah Etheridge. The minutes do give Etheridge's name as an ordain- 
ed minister and member of the Church but do not designate him as pas- 
tor. The Associational Clerk, Elder J. G. Hall, in his digest of the church- 
es, stated that "Brother Doxey has labored with this Church statedly 
(This is a term used to speak of a pastor)." He states further "the revival 
has subsided and they say: we have notliing of a pleasing nature to com- 
municate.' They ask the prayers of God's people." 

1831-1833 George M. Thompson. Authors of the following sketch 
which appeared in the 1852 Associational minutes are unknown but 
were, without doubt, appointed by the Association that year: 

Biographical Sketch of Elder George M. Thompson 

Born in London February 28, 1803. Came to America in 1815 with his 
parents. Landed in New York where his aged mother, one brother and three sisters 
still reside. At age 13 joined the Mulberry Street Baptist Church and baptized by 
the pastor, Archibald Maclay. In 1826 he located in Petersburg, Virginia. In 1828 
returned to New York and on the 17th of August of that year was granted license to 
preach. Ordained in September, 1830 in the cit>' of Richmond by a Presbytery con- 
sisting of Rev. Luther Rice, Rev. John Kerr and Rev. Eli Ball. Soon afterwards he 
located in Pasquotank County and was called to serve the churches at Salem, Eliz- 



69 



abeth City, N. C, and Suffolk, Va.; in which capacity he continued about three years. 

He married Mrs. M. Poole (relict of S. P. Poole, Esq.) in December, 1830. His 
labors in this county were abundantly blessed. Leaving this field he traveled and 
preached for four years as Missionary for the Association in destitute counties of 
Washington, and Tyrrell, frequently leaving his family for months at the time. 

Then he located in Murfreesboro where he lived for the remainder of his 
days. He was pastor at Meherrin, Mt. Carmel and Potecasi and was with the two 
former at the time of his death. He died on November 27, 1850 at the residence of 
Mr. Joseph Perkins in Halifax County, while en route to attend the Baptist State 
Convention at Louisburg. 

All of his discourses were truly evangelical and during the eight years he 
labored in the Chowan Association he baptized 1100 souls within its bounds. 

No man perhaps ever more accurately appreciated the want of an educated 
ministry in our State than he. From the first conception of such an institution as 
Wake Forest he was one of its warmest supporters, and was one of its trustees until 
his death. 

His private character was as pure and unblemished as his career in the min- 
istry was eminently useful. Amiable in disposition, kind and affable, he was an ob- 
ject of deep attachment for his family and his dearest friends. 

1834-1839 James Nash, probably a native. We find him represent- 
ing the Church at the 1829 session of the Association as an unordained 
minister. He was there again in 1830 and 1831, unordained. In 1832 he 
was not present, but his name appears in the minutes with the list of 
licentiates (Unordained). In 1833 he had been ordained and was the 
only ordained minister reported by the Church. G. M. Thompson's pas- 
torate ending in 1833, we naturally assume that Nash was pastor in 1834. 
The next four sessions report him as the only ordained minister in the 
Church and, although the minutes are not quite clear, the logical con- 
clusion would be that he was pastor. After 1839 he attended the Associa- 
tions as a delegate from the Church but not as pastor until 1851 except 
for the years 1845-47 when he was definitely shown as pastor. Within 
the next three years he died and at the 1854 session of the Association 
Elder G. W. Johnson, his pastor, was appointed to prepare a biographical 
notice of his death but for some unknown reason it never appeared in 
the minutes. The Clerk published in the minutes a notice from the Bibli- 
cal Recorder that if the biographical notice should be presented to the 
Recorder it would be published therein. Issues for several weeks follow- 
ing, now in the Wake Forest College Library, were examined but no 

70 



trace was found of it. The only reason we can think of for the notice not 
being prepared and pubHshed is that Johnson about that time was in the 
process of moving from this pastorate and Association and could not 
find the time to prepare it. 

1840-1844 Evan Forbes. In the year 1840 for the first time the As- 
sociational Clerk distinguished between pastors and other ministers be- 
longing to the churches and did for four years distinctly record Forbes 
as pastor. Forbes was for many years pastor of the mother Church in- 
cluding 1840-42 while he was also pastor of our Church. It is interesting 
to note that the Associational Clerk, Dr. S. J. Wheeler, physician, in 1840 
began and continued for several years to list pastors and other ordain- 
ed ministers under the heading: "Elders or Bishops," the Bishops being 
pastors and he so recorded Forbes. 

1845-1847 James Nash. 

1848-1852 C. R. Hendrickson who obviously came from another 
Association or State and when he left, went to another because his pas- 
torate here is all the information the Associational minutes give on him. 

1853-1854 G. W. Johnson. 

1855-1857 J. J. Lansdell, undoubtedly another new minister in the 
Association and went afar when leaving his pastorate here because this 
is our only account of him. 

April 24, 1858 - March 25, 1859 H. T. Weatherly, another native 
son, born May 10, 1805 and has lineal descendants still in the Church. On 
March 25, 1859 he and his wife, Dorothy B. Smith, whom he married 
February 7, 1832 and their daughter were granted letters of dismission. 
Where he went from here we do not know but he was pastor of churches 
in Arkansas at age 58 when he died, His great granddaughter. Miss 
Annie Weatherly, has in her family record the following newspaper ac- 
count of his deatli which bears no date line: 

We are pained to announce the death of Elder H. T. Weatherly, which oc- 
curred at his home in Arkansas on Sunday, August 19th. He had preached at one 
of his churches the preceding Sabbath - returned home on Monday, had a slight 
chill on Tuesday, which continued every other day till Saturday, when he was taken 

71 



with a congestion, which continued till Sabbath evening, when he peacefully fell 
asleep. 

Brother \A'eatherly was, we belie\e, a native of North Carolina and was 
about 58 years of age. He was a good and faithful minister, and labored zealously 
for the cause of Christ and his Church. He had the charge of two churches, preach- 
ing regularly three Sabbaths in each month, and he will be greatly missed in his 
field of labor . . . 

October 7, 1859 - 1866 R. R. Overby. In July, 1861 the Church 
consented for him to join the Confederate Army as Chaplain, but on 
September 19, 1861 the deacons requested him to return and his salary 
was to be $700.00 a year with house rent. There are perhaps more legends 
- good, bad, humerous - about him than any minister who ever lived in 
Pasquotank and Camden Counties. A great preacher and faithful pas- 
tor, so much so that he was called back for a second pastorate. He was 
tlie only pastor that we know of who had to accept his salary in kind 
except his successor, N. B. Cobb who received provisions for part of his 
remuneration. This was during his first pastorate and during the Civil 
War. One year he was to receive 600 pounds of flour and 800 pounds of 
pork and bacon for two Sundays a month. The next year he was to re- 
ceive 800 pounds of bacon and 1000 pounds of flour. In 1865 the Church 
claimed to be unable to raise the required pounds of bacon and flour 
and "on motion the Church decided to deposit $300.00 in tlie bank for 
him," but at the next conference he stated that "there was much disatis- 
faction among the members on it and I request that it be rescinded," and 
it was. Ironically, however, this year "Brother J. E. Carter helped with 
the revival" and the Church paid him $560.00 for his services. 

This pastor was addressed as Dr. Overby by most people, al- 
though a record now and tlien refers to him as Elder Overby. Wliether 
or not he had a doctorate in dieology we do not know. He came to Eliz- 
abeth City from Dinwiddy, Virginia and subsequently purchased a home 
near the present Sawyer's Creek Baptist Church where he lived until 
his deatli on November 22, 1907. Mrs. Overby preceded him nearly nine 
years, having died on October 2, 1898. They are buried near their old 
home in Camden County. 

Dr. Overby was held in high esteem in the Association and 



72 



tliroughout tlie State not only for the great preacher and leader that he 
was but also for his support of Wake Forest College and the Baptist 
program in general. Dr. George W. Paschall's History of Wake Forest 
college is high in its praise of Dr. Overby for his support of the college, 
beginning in 1867 and continuing until his deatli. In 1919 the college had 
a drive for funds and that year the Chowan Association adopted the fol- 
lowing recommendations of a committee composed of Dr. B. C. Henning, 
M. N. Sawyer, Dr. S. W. Gregory (Dentist), Rev. Josiah Elliott, E. F. Ayd- 
lett and Lycurgus Hofler: 

First - that a minimum sum of two thousand dollars be raised . . . with 
which to found a memorial scholarship in Wake Forest college to be known as the 
"R. R. Overby Scholarship," founded by the Chowan Association in memory of the 
Rev. R. R. Overby, D. D. 

Second - that this sum be considered also as a part of the contribution which 
the Association is now raising for the million dollar education fund. 

1867 - February 28, 1869 N. B. Cobb. As was his record in other 
positions, he did not remain long but apparently a very brilliant person 
and held many important positions. He met with the deacons on July 4, 
1866 in regard to becoming pastor and agreed to accept a call at $1000.00 
and he pay house rent or $800.00 and tlie Church furnish him the house. 
Just when he came in 1867 we do not know; he resigned on January 4, 
1868 but reconsidered, resigned again on February 28, 1868, after the 
committee to raise money on pastor's salary reported it 'liad done no- 
thing." (^^^lO could blame him?). 

The North Carolina Baptist Historical Papers for 1897 say of him: 

He was a graduate, cvmi laude, of the State University in the golden age of 
that institution; lawyer and Clerk and Master in Equity at Greenville; pastor at 
Goldsboro, Superintendent of Army Missions and Colportage during the (Civil) War; 
Sunday School Secretary of the Baptist State Con\ention soon after the War; pastor 
at Kempsville and Portsmouth, Virginia, at Elizabeth City, Shelby, Fayette\'ille, 
Waynsville, Hickory, Chapel Hill, Lilesville, Hillsboro, Pittsboro and other places 
(in North Carolina). He was a Trustee of Wake Forest College; founder and publish- 
er of the North Carolina Baptist Almanac; President of the Baptist State Convention 
and afterwards statistitian and one of the Secretaries of that body." 

May 27, 1869 - December 31, 1872 Dr. R. R. Overby. Salary, $30.00 

per month for each fourth Saturday and Sunday and each Sunday night. 

During a part of this pastorate Elder Quinton Trotman Simpson (See 

73 



Other Ordained Ministers) was associated in some capacity, probably 
as Associate Pastor, as seen from the follov/ing quotations from the 
Church minutes: On September 23, 1871 "Moved that the Church call 
Brother Overby and Brother Simpson and that the Deacons be appointed 
to make the arrangements and shall have the powder to make it a finality." 
August 24, 1872 "Brotliers Overby and Simpson resigned tlieir pastoral 
charges of the Church to take place tlie first of January, 1873." 

February, 1873 - March, 1875 J. F. Tuttle. After his resignation he 
remained a member of the Church and served as Moderator at several 
business conferences until September 25, 1875, when he requested letters 
for himself and his family. We do not know where he went. The name 
is prevalent here to this day, but our present Tuttles do not know 
whether they are lineal or collateral descendants or not. Our neighbor, 
Mrs. G. R. Little, remembers that he had a son, Frank, who after leaving 
here lived in Edenton, North Carolina for a while. 

June, 1875 - January 21, 1876 Oliver C. Horton, Supply (See Other 
Ordained Ministers). 

January 21, 1876 - August, 1883 J. M. C. Luke. On September 25, 
1880 he resigned but reconsidered and remained two more years. He 
came from the Court Street Church in Portsmouth, Virginia. However, 
he had been in the Chowan Association previously. The 1871 Association- 
al minutes lists his name as pastor at Plymouth and he made a plea for 
assistance on a $300.00 debt on the Church. A collection amounting to 
$60.00 was taken for the Church. The next year he is reported as pastor 
at Ebenezer and in 1873 his name does not appear at all. He had prob- 
ably gone to the Court Street Church. 

This pastor was impaired by a serious illness while here as seen 
from the following quotations from the minutes: 

June 25, 1881 — On motion in conference it is ordered that Brother J. M. C. 
Luke, Pastor and Bishop of this . . . Church, do grant him four months respite in 
consequence of his present serious illness and that the Church will pay the price 
agreed upon and give him $25.00 each month during his leave of absence - carried 
unanimously. October 27, 1881 he tendered his resignation effective January 1, 1882. 
It was on motion received. However, on Saturday, January 21 he was elected again. 



74 



May 27, 1882 "On motion the whole conference join Brother P. S. C. Davis in 
solemn, fervent prayer for Brother J. M. C. Luke and family in that God may bless 
and keep them in their afflicted condition." 

Mr. Luke went from here to Moeksville, North Carohna. 

October, 1883 - April 26, 1888 George Baker. We know httle of 
him or his family. His salary was raised from $600.00 to $700.00 the year 
he left to go to Berkley, Virginia. As far as we know, up to this time 
pastors were called on an annual basis. The "annual call" was prevalent 
in most Baptist churches at that time, and we believe this to have been 
the last one in the First Baptist Church. After that, pastors were called 
for an indefinite period. 

June 6, 1888 - January, 1889 Dr. J. L. White. Dr. White came here 
from the First Church in Raleigh and went to the First Church in Dur- 
ham, according to a report in the Recorder of his visit and address 
on the occasion of our sesqui-centennial celebration furnished by Mrs. 
E. H. Potts. Although his pastorate here was short, it will be remembered 
that our present sanctuary was begun under his leadership. Another 
thing may be remembered about his pastorate is that as far as we know 
the only request this Church ever made for assistance from the Mission 
Board on pastor's salary was during his pastorate, on October 27, 1888 
for $200.00. We will pleasantly remember that Dr. White v/as the father 
of Rev. J. L. White, Jr. who several years ago served the Blackwell 
Memorial Church so acceptably. 

April 1, 1889 - August, 1892 C. A. J. Thomas, who came here from 
Yanceville, North Carolina and went to the First Church in Greensboro. 
Up to the time of his pastorate the Church still held monthly conferences 
on Saturday, and for many years Saturday before the fourth Sunday in 
the month. He led the Church on October 5, 1891 to change the time 
to the third Sunday in each month following the preaching service. 

September 5, 1892 - September 1, 1897 Dr. Calvin S. Blackwell. 
The minutes reveal that he really had the Ph D. degree. Of course it will 
be remembered that our daughter Church on North Road Street was nam- 
ed for this popular pastor. He received a salary of $1000.00 per year. He 
was known for his deep interest in the leadership of young people and 

75 



when the Southern Baptist Convention inaugurated the Baptist Young 
People's Union, Dr. Blackwell was called to be its first Executive Secre- 
tar)' which he resigned this Church to acccept. He died in 1923. His is 
the only pastor's resignation recorded in the minutes. 

August 1, 1897 — To the Board of Deacons and members of the Baptist 
Church of Christ, Ehzabeth City, N. C. 

Dear Brethren and Sisters: 

For about five years we have worked together, and with the Lord, to build up 
the Kingdom of Christ among men. As pastor and people we have toiled together 
in perfect harmony. No official or personal disagreements ha\'e occurred to mar our 
mutual peace and prosperity. As imperfect beings, we should be mutually thankful 
that the grace of God has helped us so to live and labor. I am unable to see any 
reasons within ourselves to dissolve our relations as pastor and people. And if I 
should consult my own feelings, I would not at this time suggest such an action. 
But the Board of Managers of the Baptist Young People's Union, auxiliary to the 
Southern Baptist Convention after much prayerful deliberation, has unanimously 
called me to the Secretaryship of the Union. I interpret this call as the voice of God. 
Therefore, I must sacrifice my feelings which cry out to stay with you, to the higher 
sense of duty, which demands that I ask you to accept my resignation as your pastor. 
In accepting it I would ask that you let it take effect in time for me to take up my 
new duties September 1, 1897. 

Fraternally, 

Calvin S. Blackwell 

November, 1897 - October 14, 1900 W. S. Penick, D. D. No one 
seems to remember where Dr. Penick came from and the minutes do 
not tell us, but he resigned to go to Shreveport, Louisiana where he re- 
mained until his death on June 30, 1907. 

January 13, 1901 - October 31, 1905 Dr. Claude W. Duke who 
came from Emanuel Church in Baltimore, Maryland and went from here 
to Tampa, Florida. 

Januar)- 1, 1906 - March, 1908 Dr. J. F. Vines. Here is the first 
mention in the minutes of a union ser^•ice b\' all churches to welcome one 
of our pastors. Dr. \'ines weni from here to Anderson, South Carolina 
and from there to the First Church in Roanoke, Mrginia. He died in 
Nashville, Tennessee and was buried in Cliattanooga, pvc)Iial)]y liis home. 

September 2, 1908 Dr. E. V. Stone who came from Emanuel 
Church in Richmond, Virginia and went from here to Valley Forge, Vir- 



76 



ginia. The salary was then $1,800.00 and, beHeve it or not, on April 16, 
1911 Dr. Stone offered to let it be reduced, but his offer was rejected. 

November 1, 1912 - July 12, 1914 L. T. Reed of Buna, Virginia. 
He resigned to enter full time evangelistic work. 

December 6, 1914 - July 6, 1919 Dr. B. C. Henning who came from 
Knoxville, Tennessee and resigned to become Assistant Director of the 
fabulous $75,000,000 campaign of the Southern Baptist Convention. When 
he came the salary was raised from $1800.00 to $2,400.00, although with 
a few members failing to vote for it. The following local newspaper ac- 
count of Dr. Henning's resignation speaks eloquently of the great leader 
and preacher that he was: 

"Dr. Henning leaves Elizabeth City solely because he was drafted by the 
Baptists of the South to be one of the two men in charge of the $75,000,000 Baptist 
Drive . . . Dr. Scarborough of Texas and Dr. Henning of North Carolina will con- 
duct the greatest movement ever launched by the Baptists of the South ..." 

October 15, 1919 - May, 1922 H. K. Williams, Spartanburg, South 
Carolina native. Furman and Colgate graduate. Held pastorates in South 
Carolina before coming to Calvary Church in Portsmouth, Virginia. He 
came to us from Calvary. 

The Pulpit Committee which steered the Church in calling Mr. 
Williams consisted of W. T. Love, Sr., J. G. Gregory, I. M. Meekins, 
W. L. Cohoon, S. W. Gregory, W. L. Small and E. M. Stevens. The re- 
port of this committee is truly masterful and worthy to be studied by 
any future committee in search of a pastor. For lack of space it cannot be 
given in full, but the writer requests indulgence to quote most of it: 

Met and organized and decided on the kind of pastor we need, then began 
to search for that type of man. 

The work has not been free from embarrassing aspects . . . having different 
ministers come from time to time to preach for you has been the occasion . . . 
of embarrassment to the committee and to the visiting ministers. The committee has 
realized that ministers as a rule detest what is known among them as "sampling". 
The whole process is unfair both to the Church and the minister. No man can do 
his best when he feels he is on trial, except perhaps a mediocre man who may have 
prepared and worked up to a point of elocutionery perfection one or more sermons 
designed wholly for the purpose in hand - a good impression at the start. Frequent- 
ly, through this process the Church is led astray, calls one it concludes to be a super- 

77 



ior preacher and upon close examination discovers it has been the dupe of the 
minister's design or its own hasty impulse. However, it is difficult to secure a pastor 
. . . witliout having the minister ... to come personally before the Church, not so 
much for the purpose of hearing him preach as to see him, observe him, study him 
and form conclusions from association and deliberation . . . 

The committee after due diligence, earnest inquiry and sincere endeavor . . . 
is now ready to recommend . . . not unmindful that its recommendation may not 
meet with the approval of each individual member . . . Indeed, it would be more 
than a human committee if it could select a man who would meet the full approval 
of so many individuals as comprise tliis splendid organization. Anyone who may feel 
a sense of disappointment . . . will please be thoughtful enough to consider that 
the committee has investigated through all possible sources the character, social 
standing, ability and general fitness of the man selected by the committee; and that 
the committee's opportunity to ascertain the facts has been more accessable than the 
opportunity of any one individual, however interested such individual might be. 

... In addition ... it is the duty of the committee to investigate a man's 
family, particularly his wife, and this your committee has done, although it has been 
a very delicate task . . . 

In arriving at its conclusion the committee has had recommendations from 
publications through the press, from individuals and especially Baptist ministers. 
If any of tliese human agencies and instrumentalities can be depended upon, your 
committee feels it has made no mistake, and if it has made a mistake it is due to 
the weakness of the only earthly means to which the committee can resort. 

Then the committee quoted the Baptist Courier of Greenville, 
Soutli Carolina upon the prospective pastor's departure from South Caro- 
lina to accept the Calvary pastorate in Portsmouth. Also, the committee 
read recommendations from Dr. D. M. Ramsey, President, Woman's Col- 
lege of South Carolina, Dr. Sparks Melton, Pastor, Freemason Street 
Church in Norfolk and finally Dr. John F. Vines, a former pastor, and 
then pastor of the First Baptist Church in Roanoke, Virginia. Whereupon, 
the vote was taken and a unanimous call was extended to Mr. Williams. 

His pastorate, like the one in Portsmouth, was short, but there is 
no indication in the minutes of any difficulties. He presided at a called 
conference on May 28, 1922, when the Board of Deacons recommended 
to the Church to "accept Rev. H. K. Williams' resignation, and on motion 
the resignation was accepted." The following June 11, he and his family 
were granted letters of dismission, but the record makes no statement as 
to where they went from here. 

December 31, 1922 - September 26, 1927 Dr. Samuel H. Temple- 

78 



man, Warrenton, Virginia native, bom in 1877. He was educated at 
Bethel Military Academy, near his birthplace; Richmond College where 
he received his Bachelor of Arts and Master of Arts; at Colgate Univer- 
sity where he received his Bachelor of Divinity. He also took post grad- 
uate work at Columbia University. 

In 1909 Dr. Templeman married Miss Inez Barnes of Richmond, 
Virginia. Their children were Gertrude, Inez, Samuel and Ruth. He came 
to Elizabeth City from Laurens, South Carolina and went from here to 
Brown Memorial in Winston-Salem, his last active pastorate, which end- 
ed by the consolidation of that Church with the First Church in Winston- 
Salem. Dr. Templman then retired in Richmond where he died a few 
years later. 

It has been truthfully said by many that Dr. Templeman was a 
fearless and aggressive leader, one of the best organizers and church 
financiers that the First Baptist Church has ever had, a devoted pastor 
and one of the truly great preachers of his day. The salary when he came 
was $3,600.00 and was raised to $4,000.00 before he left. 

November 19, 1927 - January 11, 1931 Gerald H. Payne. He came 
from the Fii'st Church in Elkin, West Virginia and went from here to 
Fourth Street Church in Portsmouth, Virginia. His pastorate there was 
short but fruitful and was ended by his sudden death from a heart at- 
tack en route from his study in the Church building to the Wednesday 
evening prayer service. 

August 9, 1931 - September 9, 1933 J. C. Wicker. Wicker was a 
little late being called to the ministry and this was his first pastorate after 
graduation from the Southern Seminary, at perhaps 35 years of age or a 
little more. This was, as it will be recalled, during the great financial de- 
pression which plagued the nation and his beginning salary was only 
$2,800.00. Many of us remember his father Dr. J. J. Wicker, founder and 
President of Fork Union Military Academy at Fork Union, Virginia. Pas- 
tor Wicker went from here to North Side Church in Richmond where 
he sei-ved for a few years and succeeded his father as President at Fork 
Union, a Baptist Junior College, where he still serves. 



79 




December, 1933 - May, 1946 
Dr. Erwin H. Potts, a Mecklenburg 
County native but who came here 
from the pastorate of the First 
Church in Lexington, Virginia. On 
February 10, 1934 he married Miss 
Sarah Louise Richardson of Lexing- 
ton, Virginia. To them was born 
one child, Yvonne, born in Eliza- 
beth City, Dr. Potts received his 
B. A. degree from Wake Forest 
College, and Th.D. degree from the 
Southern Baptist Theological Semi- 
nary in Louisville, Kentucky. 

This Church has a record of 
short pastorates, but Dr. Potts had 
a long and fruitful one - the longest in the history of the Church with the 
exception of its first pastor, Thomas Etheridge, whose successive services, 
however, are somewhat in doubt. While here he was also active in civic 
and denominational work including his services as Chairman of the 
Elizabeth City chapter, American Red Cross, ten years as Moderator of 
the Chowan Association and Director of the Biblical Recorder, State de- 
nominational newspaper. 

Dr. Potts went from here to the Fair Park Church, Alexandria, 
Virginia, May 1, 1946 and from there to the First Church in Spencer, 
North Carolina, September, 1949 where he remained in a happy and suc- 
cessful pastorate until his sudden death of a heart attack on May 23, 1957. 
Funeral services were conducted at the First Baptist Church, Spencer, 
N. C. by Rev. William Lamb, pastor First Church in Cherryville, North 
Carolina whom he baptized during his Elizabeth City pastorate; Dr. 
Ralph Herring, pastor First Church, Winston-Salem; and Dr. William 
Harrison Williams, Charlotte, North Carolina. Interment was at the Flint 
Hill Baptist Church cemetery. Fort Mill, South Carolina, which was his 
old home Church and located about one mile from the Potts home place 
in North Carolina. 

80 



July 1, 1946 - August, 1956 W. W. Finlator, Raleigh native and 
reared in the Tabernacle Baptist Church of that city. Another Wake 
Forest and Louisville graduate, who held pastorates in Pittsboro and 
Weldon, North Carolina before coming to Elizabeth City. During his 
pastorate he led the Church in a great building program and remodeling 
and completely renovating the sanctuary (See chapter on Sanctuary and 
the chapter on Other Buildings). Moreover, the Church reached its peak 
in membership while he was here. A good pastor and a great preacher 
who was unafraid to take a stand on issues which he believed to be 
scripturally and morally right, even if they were innovations which broke 
all traditions. The unusual length of his pastorate, much longer than the 
average, speaks eloquently of the congregation's faith in his ability and 
leadership. He resigned to accept the pastorate of the PuUen Memorial 
Church in his native City of Raleigh where he still serves. 



The present pastor, Maurice 
W. Grissom, left, is a native of 
Wilmington, North Carolina. He re- 
ceived his education at Campbell 
and Wake Forest colleges. North 
Carolina, and Crozer Theological 
seminary, Chester, Pennsylvania. He 
was married to Miss Doris Batch- 
elor of Nashville, North Carolina 
on October 20, 1945. They have two 
lovely children: Michael 13, and 
Bobby 6. Before coming to this 
Church on January 1, 1956 Mr, 
Grissom was pastor at the Mother 
Church, Shiloh; churches in Frank- 
lin and Vance counties; Associate 
pastor with Dr. Norfleet Gardner, 
First Church, Henderson, North Carolina; and pastor at Belmar, New Jer- 
sey. In addition to his college and seminary training above mentioned. 




81 



Mr. Grissom is an accomplished musician, vocalist and conductor which 
also stands him in good as a pastor and leader. 

In summation there are a few interesting observations. The Church 
has had a total of 35 pastors, including the six months supply pastorate 
of Elder Oliver C. Horton. These pastors serv^ed an average of five years 
each, including the total years served by those who were here for one 
or more pastorates. I have stated elsewhere that the Church has a record 
of short pastorates and with the above information some may disagree, 
which of course is a matter of right and opinion. The longest pastorate, 
except the first who was Thomas Etheridge whose successive services 
are somewhat in doubt, was that of Dr. E. H. Potts - from December, 
1933 to May, 1946. The shortest was that of Dr. J. L. White who served 
from June 6, 1888 to January, 1889. Five pastors were called back for 
two or more pastorates: John Rowe, Thomas Weymouth, Jeremiah Ether- 
idge, James Nash and Dr. R. R. Overby. 



82 



CHAPTER IX 

The Office of Deacon 

This is indeed a high office, the function of which may be sum- 
med up in two words: Pastor's Assistant. Originally, there was only one 
duty assigned to the deacon - that of distributing the church poor funds 
so the apostles (Pastors) might have more time for prayer and preaching 
the Word. In our time pastors are expected to do so many things foreign 
to strictly prayer and preaching the Word that the main functions of 
their office are too often made secondary or even lower in importance. 
Many things that present day pastors are called upon to do should be 
done by deacons, not as ruling boards but as pastor's assistants in the 
daily ministrations of the multitudious aspects of kingdom work. 

The qualifications of a deacon as laid down by New Testament 
standards are both negative and positive. He must not be double-tongued, 
nor given to much wine, greedy of filtliy lucre nor a bigamist. On the 
other hand he must be grave, proved and found to be blameless, rule 
well in his household and hold the mystery of the faith in a pure con- 
science. The deacon's wife, if he is fortunate to have one, also has re- 
sponsibility not to be slanderous (Double-tongued) but grave and sober, 
not only of mind but free from intoxicants. 

Since the Church minutes date back only to March 27, 1857, As- 
sociational minutes and other sources were checked to find the names 
of at least some who served as deacons prior to that time, but only two 
were found - Bailey Jackson and John Rowe - named as deacons in the 
Charles Grice deed October 1, 1805 conveying the corner of Main and 
Dyer street lot to the Church. John Rowe was later ordained as a minister 
and was pastor a number of years. 

The 141 names listed below together with other pertinent infor- 
mation concerning the office and work of deacons have been taken from 
church minutes, annuals, and other printed bulletins. Utmost care has 
been taken to list every available name and to list first elections only. 
Some served for many years successively and some have been off the 



83 



board for varying periods of time and then came back. If any names 
have been left out it is because they were not in any of the records ex- 
amined or because we honestly could not find them. There may have 
been some missed because it will be noted there are many vacant gaps 
in the chronology of years. On the other hand it may be assumed that 
the missing years contained no elections and the old board continued to 
serve until their successors were elected and ordained: 

August 2, 1858 Elisha Harris, Jonathan B. Sawyer and J. S. Cart- 
wright. 

December 25, 1858 S. D. Cartwright. 

February 25, 1860 "On motion Brothers J. M. Morgan, Elisha 
Harris, Jonathan B. Sawyer and S. D. Cartwright were set apart for or- 
dination at the earliest convenience." It is noted that when this ordination 
service was held on March 18, 1860 only J. M. Morgan and Elisha Harris 
were ordained. A notation in the minutes of this date says "Jonathan B. 
Sawyer was not present and J. S. Cartwright was not ready." At this 
point the minutes raise some doubt that the Church had previously been 
ordaining its deacons because Elisha Harris, Jonathan B. Sawyer and 
J. S. Cartwright had been serving for at least part of 1858 and all of 1859 
and if they had been ordained for those years it is hardly probable they 
would have been up for ordination again in 1860. There is doubt that 
Jonathan B. Sawyer ever served but his name is included in the above 
count. Although J. S. Cartwright "was not ready" on March 18, 1860 he 
probably changed his mind because he was appointed again the next 
year and his name is listed as being present at a meeting of the board on 
August 4, 1865. 

August 24, 1861 Thomas R. Bland. 

At a meeting of the board on September 19, 1861 members pres- 
ent were: "Scott, Simpson, Harris and Morgan." It may be assumed that 
Harris and Morgan were Elisha and J. M., respectively. Scott and Simp- 
son were names not previously mentioned and we are unable to identify 
them, unless Simpson was Q. T. Simpson, a school teacher, who was 
granted a license to preach on August 31, 1867. 

84 



August 5, 1865 James Forbes, John S. Waugh, Alanson Sawyer and 
Cornelius W. Kellenger. 

August 14, 1865. Present at a board meeting were: J. M. Morgan, 
Elisha Harris, James S. Cartwright. Brothers Scott, M. Sanderhn, Sr. and 
Clerk, C. W. Kellenger were absent. Here again a new name appears 
whose election and ordination was not listed in the minutes. It is the 
name of M. Sanderlin, Sr. 

July 24, 1869 Horton, Etheridge, Dawson and Scott were elected. 
Presuming that Scott was the same as listed above (Initials still not 
given), here are three new names. Horton is found to be Oliver C. who 
later served as Treasurer and still later ordaind to the ministry. Dawson 
was W. C. and Etheridge must have been William because the church 
roll for that year was checked and he was the only Etheridge found. 

January 24, 1874 William C. Cartwright. 

March 20, 1879 board meeting reveals another new name - C. R. 
Jones - and he was Clerk to the board. His election and ordination is 
not listed in the minutes. 

August 23, 1879 Charles Harris, F. F. Cohoon, E. F. Pritchard and 
Elias Pritchard. It appears that these four and Thomas R. Bland, pre- 
viously listed, composed tlie entire board at this time. This election is 
the first recorded election by private ballot. 

February 25, 1882 P. S. C. Davis (On August 23, 1884 ordained to 
the gospel ministry), and David Love. This election increased the num- 
ber on the board from five to seven. 

March 3. 1882 S. Modlin, a new name appearing as being present 
at a board meeting, but whose election and ordination was not recorded 
in the church minutes. 

March 21, 1885 James F. Lo\-e (On .Vugust 27, 1887 ordained to 
th(^ gospel ministry and rose to tlie position of Executive Secretary, 
Southern Baptist Mission Board). 

May 21, 1887 E. F. Aydlett and William Cooper. 



October 28, 1888 Zephaniah Burgess, W. T. Love, Sr., and George 
W. Brothers. 

July 27, 1889 W. K. Carter. 

On April 15, 1894 it was decided to increase the number on the 
board to nine to comply with the requirement of the new Covenant. New 
names appearing in tlie new Church Covenant are M. L. Davis, M. L. 
Simpson and G. D. B. Pritchard. 

June 17, 1894 J. R. Pinner, W. N. Gregory and J. D. Sykes. 

January 5, 1895 George W. Twiddy. 

Much earlier in the record, on March 18, 1860, after an unknown 
number of years without ordaining the deacons the Church began ob- 
serving the rite. How long it was observed from that date is not known. 
It appears that on May 21, 1887 when E. F. Aydlett and William Cooper 
were elected the Church was not observing the rite and did not until 
1896 because on January 5 of that year "A motion is made that the dea- 
cons be ordained." The motion was tabled to January 16 "for considera- 
tion and action." At the January 16 conference Dr. Calvin S. Blackwell, 
pastor, gave a scriptural review of the subject and was "requested to 
have his address on ordination of deacons printed in one of our denomi- 
national papers." There was additional "discussion by the brethren, the 
question is called and the motion (For ordination) is carried. Where- 
upon E. F. Aydlett tenders his resignation (He had served continuously 
for nine years) as a deacon on tlie grounds that he does not believe it 
necessary and he has scruples against being ordained. His resignation 
was accepted." 

February 2, 1896 M. H. Snowden elected to succeed E. F. Aydlett. 

On October 4, 1896 "The deacons are requested to take up the 
matter of their own attendance (At worship services) so as to have enough 
present at all services to take up collections." 

December 27, 1896 M. N. Sawyer and C. W. Stevens. 

January 9, 1897 "On motion the deacons are requested to meet 

86 



each montli for not less tlian two hours and to allow no membe: to 
leave its meeting without unanimous consent. Vote carried nineteen to 
seven." 

August 30, 1899 E. F. Aydlett again elected to succeed G. D. B. 
Pritchard, resigned. Apparently Mr. Aydlett had changed his convictions 
and was ready to be ordained. At this meeting tiie following motion was 
passed thirteen to seven: "It is the sense of the Church that the office of 
Chairman of the board of deacons is unnecessary and undesirable." The 
record does not show how long tliis was the "sense" of tlie Church, but 
as far back as most of us can remember the board has been electing its 
Chairman. 

December 16, 1900 The Board recommended an increase in the 
number of deacons from nine to twelve. There is no record of tlie Church 
voting on the recommendation but it is assumed tliat it did vote in the 
affirmative. 

December 30, 1900 R. T. Venters, W. E. Evans and F. L. Garrett. 
This brought the number on the board to twelve. 

January 3, 1901 M. M. Sawyer. 

October 18, 1903 J. H. LeRoy, Sr. 

December 25, 1904 V^. J. Broughton, Dr. Samuel W. Gregory 
(Dentist). 

January 7, 1906 J. J. White, Sr. and Noah Burfoot, Sr. 

January 6, 1907 W. T. Deans. 

January 6, 1908 E. M. Stevens. 

January 6, 1909 J. R. Pinner. 

On July 16, 1913 in special conference the Church voted to in- 
crease the number from 12 to 15 and additional new deacons elected 
were P. C. Cohoon, G. R. Barrow and C. C. Clark. This increase in num- 
ber was evidently relaxed for some reason within the next four and a 
half years because on January 12, 1919 we find the same motion made 
and carried. 

87 



December 28, 1913 G. F. Horner. 

January 3, 1915 S. G. Scott, Sr. 

February 13, 1918 A. J. Scott. 

March 3, 1918 N. C. Clark. 

January 4, 1920 I. \L Meekins and R. C. Abbott. At this confer- 
ence it was decided "In the future, no person retiring from the board . . . 
by reason of his term of office having expired shall be eligible for re- 
election until a period of one year has elapsed." 

February 27, 1921 Pat G. Twiddy to succeed his father George W. 
Twiddy who had served continuously since January 5, 1896 and whose 
death occurred January 23, 1921. 

In December, 1921 a motion to elect a junior board of deacons was 
'Tjlocked" and the title changed to that of co-operative committee. No- 
thing is said of what the duties of this committee would be and the 
only official act of it that I have found was the approval of certain recom- 
mendations from the board of deacons on February 7, 1930. However, 
the record shows many good men serving on the committee until 1935. 
After that year tliere appears to have been no further elections. The 
original number on tlie committe was 15 but in 1932 tlie number was 
reduced to 12. 

December 4, 1921 R. R. Moss, J. G. Gregory and W. L. Small. 

January 1, 1923 M. P. Jennings and C. F. Garrett. 

December 25, 1923 C. P. Harris, Sr. The 1924 church annual gives 
the name of J. L. Pritchard who has not been previously listed. This ann- 
ual gives the names of five whose tenns would expire in 1924, fi\'e in 
1925 and five in 1926 and indicates that Mr. Pritchard's term would ex- 
pire in 1926. Therefore, serving a three-year term as he evidently was, 
we must assume that he was elected in December, 1922 or January, 1923. 

December 7, 1924 J. B. Anderson, J. B. Alderman and Calvin H. 
Twiddy. 

88 



December 21, 1926 Sam E. Williams. 

December 11, 1927 Dr. I. A. Ward (Medical Doctor). 

December 9, 1928 R. L. Garrett. 

January 29, 1929 E. E. Hollowell, F. T. Homer and D. M. Love. 

February 3, 1930 a previously appointed committee composed of 
J. G. Gregory, M. P. Jennings, E. E. Hollowell, C. P. Harris, Sr., and 
J. J. White, Sr. "to take under consideration and make recommendations 
concerning the deaconate of the Church made detailed recommendations 
concerning the purpose, composition, qualifications, meetings, organ- 
ization and duties of the active board of deacons. The recommendations 
were adopted and on February 7, 1930 were appro\ed by the Board of 
Co-operation. This committee also recommended a couple of innovations 
which were adopted: 

The first was an auxiliary board of deacons to be elected annually 
by the Church, to have essentially the same qualifications of the active 
deacons but not to be ordained. The membership was to be elected 
without regard to age and "shall be students of the work of the Church 
and of deacons, and that they shall aid tlie members of the Active Board 
of Deacons and Pastor, and shall thus be in training for advancement to 
the Active Board." Apparently, the Church did not accept the plan as 
there seems to be no record of the auxiliary board being appointed. 

The second recommendation, which was approved and has since 
been observed was an honorary board consisting of those who 'liave 
used the office of a deacon well" and have earned for themselves a 
"good degree," and to make provision whereby those who have faith- 
fully served this church as active deacons and who are no longer able 
to actively serve on account of age or health or other duties or absence 
from the city or other sufficient cause may retain tlieir status as deacons, 
but without assignment of active duties for the time being. Their privi- 
leges were to attend meetings, participate in discussions and vote, sit 
with the active board when the Lord's Supper was being served and 



89 



make recommendations from time to time. Honorary members were to 
remain so as long as the Church and they themselves desire, resign at 
any time they wished, but termination of membership in the Church 
would automatically terminate their membership on the board of honor- 
ary deacons. And, of course, the Church was to have the authority to 
remove members from the Board if it so desired and saw proper. 

Today tliere is but one member of this Board by reason of age or 
infirmity, Mr. G. R. Barrow who served faithfully for many years. 

February 9, 1930 F. F. Garrett resigned. His election was either 
not recorded in the minutes or overlooked in making this list. 

April 27, 1930 W. T. Love, Jr., to succeed his father, resigned. 

December 28, 1930 J. H. LeRoy, Jr. 

December 27, 1931 E. T. Burgess, Thomas W. Whaley, Zenas 
Jennings and R. L. Griffin. 

After many years of faithful service Mr. Griffin was stricken with 
paralysis and was disabled for a long time. In recognition of this faith- 
ful service the pastor and Board awarded him the following certificate: 

HONORARY DEACON 

Upon the occasion of the appointment of 

ROBERT L. GRIFFIN 

as honorary deacon for life by action of 

THE FIRST BAPTIST CHURCH 

we the members present to him this token 

of our appreciation for his many years of 

devoted services to the Church, and of our 

gratitude for the faith and character his 

life exemplifies. 

W. W. Finlator, A. B. Alderman, 

Pastor Chm. Board Deacons 

Elizabeth City, N. C. 
October 30, 1949 



90 



January 1, 1933 W. C. Morse, Jr. 
1934 J. C. Abbott. 

January 10, 1937 J. L. Lamb, Sr., J. H. Ballard, H. D. White and 
T. O. Bundy. 

December 8, 1937. The number of deacons was increased from 
15 to 20 - fiv^e to be elected for one year, five for two years, etc., "that 
those now in office, terms cease December 31, 1937 and that they, too, 
be in line for re-election. This plan was worked out by Mrs. H. S. Over- 
man, Mrs. J. P. Sawyer and Mrs. J. H. LeRoy, Sr." 

December 12, 1937 E. R. Ferrell. 

January, 1938 M. B. Shepherd. 

October 15, 1938 "On motion of G. A. Twiddy, it was agreed to 
rescind the motion made on December 8, 1937 with reference to elections 
and terms of office of deacons." 

1939 Clarence L. Twiford and A. Ray Sawyer. 
October, 1940 Harry L. Jackson and J. Paul Sawyer. 

July, 1941 P. H. Jameson, to fill unexpired term of J. L. Gregson, 
deceased. 

1942 James L. Jackson. 

1943 Selby Scott. 

October 16, 1946 "Voted not to elect a deacon again when his 
term expires until after one year's lapse of time." Apparently, the January 
4, 1920 adoption of this policy was not adhered to or had in the mean- 
time been lifted. The rotating system adopted in 1937 and rescinded in 
1938 was again adopted at this meeting. 

December 15, 1946 C. P. Harris, Jr., S. G. Scott, Jr., J. C. Prescott, 
M. N. Toxey and S. G. Etheridge. 

December 4, 1947 A. B. Alderman, J. H. Moore, G. B. Randolph 
and Dr. Wm. Hersey Davis, Jr. (Physician). 



91 



December 12, 1948 Dr. I. T. Blanchard (Physician) and Basil Pettit 
September 18, 1949 Allan Voss and W. R. Sawyer. 
October, 1950 James F. Tuttle and Howard W. Morrisette. 
September 9, 1951 J. E. Corbett, W. W. Garrett and H. L. Jordan. 

1953 Willard Savin and Charlie S. Vann. 

1954 Charles Gordon, Hubert Tarkenton and Wesley Williams. 

1955 D. D. Dudley. 

1956 Davis Rhodes and E. Paul Wise. 

1957 Reid Overman. 

1958 Ray Jones, Jr., Levin Culpepper and Gaither Aydlett. 

1959 Joseph L. Lamb, Jr. and Gerald White. This year for the 
first time in its history the Church elected two deaconesses - Mrs. D. M. 
Love and Mrs. J. H. LeRoy, Jr. 

1960 C. M. Ashley, R. C. Bunch, Cecil Basnight, Dewey Wells, 
A. B, Etheridge, L. E. Sherlock and Dr. W. A. Hoggard, Jr. (Physician). 



92 



CHAPTER X 

Church Clerks (Secretaries) 

The church minutes give a fair record of persons filHng this im- 
portant office from 1858. Previous to 1858 the Associational minutes did 
not carry lists of church officers except pastors. Therefore, only two 
Clerks are known before that time. 

1808 minutes of Ramoth Gilead, our daughter Church, reveal that 
Bailey Jackson, Esq., signed as Clerk the dismissal of certain members 
to organize as an independent Church. 

1847 Associational minutes state that W. D. Pritchard, Clerk, 
represented the Church in the Association that year. Church minutes: 

April 24, 1858 - December 25, 1859 J. M. Morgan. 

December 25, 1859 - April 24, 1869 C. W. Kellenger. 

June 25, 1869 - August 24, 1872 A. S. Morgan. 

October 20, 1872 - May 23, 1874 S. E. Overby, son of the two- 
time pastor, Dr. R. R. Overby. 

June 25, 1874 - November 24, 1877 J. S. Waugh. 

December 22, 1877 - August 23, 1884 S. J. Halstead. 

August 23, 1884 - March 26, 1887 W. A. H. Holmes. 

March 26, 1887 - September 10, 1887 J. C. Love. 

October 22, 1887 - March 20, 1892 S. S. Davis, who because of his 
rich singing voice and his great joy in using it, became known as "Singing 
Sam." He should not be mistaken for another S. S. Davis in the Church, 
son of Rev. P. S. C. Davis. 

March 20, 1892 - December 30, 1894 G. D. B. Pritchard. 

December 30, 1894 - December 31, 1899 J. G. Gregory. 

December 31, 1899 - December 29, 1901 C. C. Barnard. 



93 



1902 - 1914 J. G. Gregory. 

December 19, 1915 - 1917 R. C. Abbott. 

1918 - 1921 J. G. Gregory. 

December 4, 1921 - 1927 C. P. Harris, Sr. 

1927 - 1929 J. Kenyon Bailey. 

1930 - 1931 J. D. Sykes. 

January 3, 1932 - 1945 J. C. Abbott. 

1946 - December 12, 1948 Miss Nellie Strahl. On this latter date 
the minutes show that the office of Clerk was abolished and the duties 
were given to the Church Secretary. As described in the chapter on 
Treasurers, the Secretary referred to here was more commonly known 
as Financial Secretary. First reference to the office was on December 
2, 1865 when James Cartwright was elected. The title then was Clerk of 
Accounts. No further mention is made of the office until 1915 when J. 
Kenyon Bailey was elected as Financial Secretary. This is the office 
which on December 12, 1948 was to take over the duties of Church Clerk 
and, as far as we know, never again has been referred to as Financial 
Secretary - just Secretary. The duties being to take charge of all receipts, 
give credit in the ledger to each individual contributor, deposit total 
sums to the credit of the Church Treasurer, keep an accurate list of 
members and do the general secretarial or clerical functions of the 
Church. We on the local level refer to the office as Secretary, but on 
the Associational and Conventional level the office is still Church Clerk 
as it has always been since the beginning of Baptist churches in America. 

1949 - 1951 Miss Genevieve Royal, who was also Director of Re- 
ligious Education. 

September 12, 1951 - April 8, 1956 Mrs. E. F. Aydlett, Sr. 

1956 - Mrs. W. B. Riddick, who still serves. 



94 



CHAPTER XI 
Treasurers and Financial Secretaries 

The record appears to reveal generally very capable and dedicated 
persons who have held this position of responsibility. For the purpose 
of comparison, not only of style but also of amounts contributed by the 
Church, reports are given following the names of as many Treasurers. 
As the list progresses clarifying comments seem in order. 

The first report of record was on April 24, 1858 and was a quarter- 
ly report. Unfortunately, we do not know who was Treasurer at that time: 



Cash collected 

Paid out by Treasurer 



$31.42 
34.79 



Balance due Treasurer 3.37 

Deacons report of state of Church 



Money owe L. B. Ferring 


$26.87 






" Pool & Whidby 


28.75 






" Dr. R. R. Spence 


8.00 






J. N. Morgan 


21.00 






On J. J. Lansdele Sal. 


74.52 










(Error in 






$159.04 


addition) 


Money collect today for cr this ad 


t $8.00 


151.04 




Mone due H. T. Weatherly on sal. 


$198.00 


198.00 






357.04 




Money collect today 


$37.00 






Money collect today 


5.00 






Flour from S. S. Burgess 


7.00 






Balance Due 




$305.04 


(Error) 


$44.00 paid to H. T. Weatherly. 







The errors noted could be due to our inability to decipher the 
written report in the minutes. We are unable to tell what all of the ac- 
counts due were for, but we do know that H. T. Weatherly was pastor 
and J. J. Lansdell was the im.mediate past pastor. A rather poor report 
for clarity, we would say; and with a membership of possibly 400, a 
sorry showing of financial support of the Church and its pastors. How- 



95 



ever, following the reading of this distressing report and amounts due, 
the conference "On motion Sisters Susan Gregory, Frances Scott, Mary 
Benton, Martha Dorson and Jennie Hunter and Brothers James Savin, 
C. W. Kellenger be and they are hereby appointed to collect money for 
the pastors salary; and Brother Samuel Halstead to collect money to pay 
the other debt of the Church v/hich is now due." 

March IS, 1860 - December 2, 1865 Thomas R. Bland (First named 
Treasurer - names of preceding Treasurers have been lost). 

December 2, 1865 - January 22, 1871 Elisha Harris. 

January 22, 1871 - 1873 W. C. Dawson. 

1873 - July 25, 1874 O. C. Horton, who later was ordained to the 
gospel ministry. At the April 26, 1873 conference it was decided to abolish 
the office and impose the duties upon the Clerk, who at that time was 
S. E. Overby. Evidently, this plan for some reason never went into ef- 
fect because at the July 25, 1874 conference Horton resigned as Treas- 
urer, and 0\'erby never served. The record is clear that Overby was ad- 
dicted to liquor and that is probably the reason for a reconsideration of 
the above motion. 

July 25, 1874 - September 25, 1877 J. M. Morgan. 

September 25, 1877 - April 18, 1882 F. F. Cohoon. 

April 18, 1882 - August 25, 1883 Sam Modlin. 

August 25. 1883 - December 31, 1893 E. F. Aydlett. 

Following is Mr. Aydlett's report for the calendar year 1892. It 
will be noted that the first report recorded was only a quarterly report 
while this is an annual one: 

Dr Cr 

To amount received for orphanage $ 80.88 80.00 

By paid 

To amount received for Board of Education 17.50 

By paid 17.50 

To recei\'ed for Church in Camden (Indiantown) 15.00 

By paid 15.00 



96 



To received for missions 



158.85 



By paid for home missions 




25.00 


foreign missions 




73.51 


state missions 




60.14 


To received for Sunday School library 


34.75 




By Paid 




34.75 


To received for Tarborough Church 


50.00 




By paid 




50.00 


To received for pastor's salary 


972.93 




To received for poor 


103.14 




By paid out for poor 




77.56 


To incidental collections 


207.64 




By expenses 




210.64 


To collection for moving Dr. C. S. Blackwell 


40.00 




By paid 




40.00 


By pastor's salary, Brothers Thomas and Blackwell 


974.38 


Recapitulation 






To amount received benevolences 


$ 322.23 




To amount received for poor 


103.14 




Incidentals 


207.64 




Other objects 


74.75 




Pastor's salary 


972.93 




Total 


$1680.69 




By paid for benevolent purposes 




$ 322.03 


poor 




77.56 


Incidental expenses 




210.64 


Other objects 




74.75 


Pastor's salary 


Total 


974.38 




$1659.36 


Leaving a balance in Treasurer's hands 




$ 21.33 
1680.69 


The Treasurer has in his hands the following: 




For poor 




25.58 


Missions 




.20 




25.78 


The Church owes Treasurer amount overpaid for 


pastor's salary 


1.45 


Incidental 


. expenses 


3.00 



Total 



4.45 



The abo\e shows no account of the carpet and chairs fund amt. to $433.25 
Neither does it show any account of what was raised and paid on the 

heaters during 1892 which amoimts to 467.78 

Showing a grand total raised by the Church in 1892 of $2581.71 

97 



January 1, 1894 - February 27, 1896 G. W. Ward. 

February 27, 1896 - December 31, 1899 Dr. H. T. Aydlett. 

December 31, 1899 - December 31, 1909 J. R. Pinner. 

Mr. Pinner's 1904 report is given here and is the first printed re- 
port found. Printed, no doubt, for distribution among the membership: 

Rec'd for Pastor's Salary from delegents for 1903 $248.88 

Paid C. W. Duke, bal. for 1903 $294.19 









$249.19 


294.19 


Rec'd for Pastor's Salary 1904 






$1,240.49 




Paid C. W. Duke 








1,240.49 


Poor Account 










Bal. on hand Jan., 1904 






10.49 




Receipts for year 






132.05 




Paid to aid poor 








123.55 


Orphanage 








14.00 


Bal. on hand 








4.99 




142.54 


142.54 


S. S. Annex 










Bal. on hand Jan. 1, 1904 






15.00 




Scramble 






97.55 




Borrowed from Savings Bank 






544.00 




Proceeds Richmond Excursion 






144.31 




Va. Beach 






100.00 




Contributions 






303.00 




Paid J. W. Martin 








935.83 


Savings Bank on Notes and In. 




267.89 


Bal. on hand 








14.00 




1,203.87 


1,203.68 


State Missions 










Receipts 






231.95 




Paid D. P. Harris 








208.33 


Blackwell Mem. Ch. 


for 


1903 




23.01 


Bal. on hand 








.61 




231.95 


231.95 



(The W. M. S. paid $13.95 of the above.) 

Foreign Missions 
Receipts 358.15 

Pd. J. M. Maloy for African Miss. 10.00 

98 



Mr. Fushida 14.70 

R. J. Willingham 333.45 



358.15 358.15 



(The W. M. S. pd. $43.70 of this amt.) 
(The Juniors " $10.00 " " " ) 



Home Miss, and Education 
Receipts 110.45 

Paid for Home Missions 69.20 

" " Education 40.00 

Bal on hand 1.25 



(The W. M. S. paid $1.25 of this) 110.45 110.45 

On hand Jan. 1, 1904 6.89 

Receipts 818.46 

Paid out 817.96 

Bal. on hand 7.34 



825.35 825.35 



Pews 
Amt. Received 633.45 

Rebate Freight 12.00 

Paid freight on Pews 83.50 

" Drayage " " 4.00 

" Mr. Duffy on Pews 70.00 



487.95 
645.45 645.45 



Heater 
Received for Heater 149.25 

Paid N. Burfoot 149.25 



Sunday Schools 

Riverside: Receipts for year 109.36 

First 266.23 

Amt. raised ladies for Chapel 626.73 

Painting 

Amt. reed from old Pews 50.00 

lumber 2.50 

Bal. due Treas. 253.71 
Paid on Painting and Repairs 306.21 



306.21 306.21 



Total receipts and Balances 

including $544. borrowed 6,211.19 



Total paid out 5,961.88 

Bal. in hand of treas. 249.31 

The members of this Church have contributed to the 
Blackwell Church. 

Memorial Building fund, approximately $2000. 

The Church owes its Pastor 256.51 

Savings Bank about 500.00 

Note to B. M. Church 600.00 

Sunday small amounts about 50.00 
This does not include balance on Pews and Heater. 
I find that the contributions through the envelopes are made by about 300 

members. 

The above is submitted as correct, errors and omissions excepted. 

J. R. Pinner, Treasurer. 
January 1, 1910 - January 1, 1911 J. M. Bell. 

January 1, 1911 - December 31, 1921 R. C. Abbott. Mr. Abbott's 
final report: 

Receipts 

Balance on hand January 1, 1921 - current expense fund $ 493.09 

Balance on hand January 1, 1921 - 75 Million Fund 139.44 

Amount recei\ed through en\elopes for current expenses 3,271.61 

initial offerings 17.45 

as loose change 391.87 

" " for the poor fund 134.66 

As rent from the new parsonage 300.00 

old " 420.00 

free will offering for Dr. Aubrey Williams 

(Revival 320.25 

pastors expense to Southern Convention 100.00 

for B. Y. P. U. delegate 26.00 

through envelopes for 75 million fund 4,359.97 

from W. M. S. " " " 70.00 

Sunbeams " " " 52.90 

Disbursements 

Rev. H. K. Williams (Salary for year) $ 3,000.00 

R. C. Abbott (Treasurer for year) 100.00 

Henry James (Janitor for year) 480.00 

Sacraments (For year) 12.42 

Coal and wood (For tlie year) 63.75 

Gas bills (For year) 23.50 

Rev. W. T. Halstead (Supply) 20.00 

Lights, water and sewerage (For year) 142.26 

Repairs to organ and pianos 63.38 

Amount paid for church envelopes 59.47 



100 



" given B. Y. P. U. 25.00 

Provisions and wearing materials given the poor 118.83 

Pastor's expenses to Southern Baptist Convention 100.00 

Amount paid to Dr. Aubrey Wilhams 200.00 

Paid to Mr. F. E. McCrary 175.00 

Southern Hotel 90.00 

Printing for the year 103.62 

H. L. Grain (Architect) 154.43 

Expenses W. M. S. delegate 15.00 

B. Y. P. U. delegate 26.00 

Paid for music for the choir for the year 18.12 

Insurance premiums 200.10 

Repairs on property 322.75 

Paid P. O. Walters, Treasurer, on 75 million fund 4,508.00 

Balance in bank, current expense fund 11.30 

on 75 million fund 64.31 



$10,097.24 



In addition to the above disbursements the following amounts have been 

paid out of funds in hand: 
The First Baptist Sunday School $ 1,615.93 

W. M. S. 179.42 

Ladies Aid Society 407.69 

Amount collected for special repairs on Church building 597.00 



2,800.04 
Total amount contributed by Church and societies $12,897.04 

Januaiy 1, 1922 - January 1, 1923 E. T. Burgess. 

January 1, 1923 - December 31, 1923 S. G. Etheridge. At the 
November 25, 1923 conference the office of Treasurer and Financial 
Secretary were combined and Miss Inez Reid, who had been serving as 
Financial Secretary since December 4, 1921, was elected Financial Secre- 
tary-Treasurer for full time. 

First mention in the minutes of an office resembling that of Fi- 
nancial Secretary was on December 2, 1865 when James Cartwright was 
elected. The title then was Clerk of Accounts and the duties were to 
take charge of all receipts; record all paid assessments, pledges or con- 
tributions to individual accounts and deposit total sums to the credit of 
the Church Treasurer. The minutes make no further reference to the 
office or the official until June 1, 1915 when J. Kenyon Bailey was elect- 
ed. The office was then titled Financial Secretary. He apparently served 



101 



until November 25, 1923 and was succeeded by Miss Inez Reid when 
the office was combined with that of Treasurer. This combination seems 
to have continued until 1944 when Miss Marie Roberts left us, because 
from then until 1948 the names of Mrs. Bertha Williamson, Miss Ida 
Bland Overman, Mrs. Sid Taylor, Mrs. M. G. Wright and Mrs. E. A. 
Swain appear in this order as having served as Financial Secretary. At 
the same time the record reveals separate Treasurers. In 1948 as we will 
see in the chapter on Clerks, the office of Clerk was abolished and the 
duties given to the Secretary. We now return again to the list of Treas- 
urer - Financial Secretary combination. 

January 1, 1924 - February 13, 1927 Miss Inez Reid. The Assoc- 
iational minutes for 1927 gives the name of M. P. Jennings as Treasurer 
for that year. This was probably the result of Mr. Jennings serving for a 
short time after the resignation of Miss Reid and the coming of Miss 
Inez Cartwright. 

1927 - September 1, 1928 Miss Inez Cartwright. 

September 1, 1928 - May 1, 1929 Miss Louise McDaniel. 

May 1, 1929 - 1932 Mrs. E. R. Spence. 

1932 - 1937 Mrs. R. L. Garrett. There is a notation in the Church 
minutes that Mrs. Garrett resigned as Secretary on December 31, 1934. 
The Clerk probably was thinking of tlie combined office of Financial 
Secretary and Treasurer because, actually, that was the position she was 
holding. However, she probably reconsidered and continued to serve be- 
cause the Associational minutes list her as Treasurer until 1937. At this 
point forward we rely upon Associational minutes as the Church record 
does not show election of Treasurers. 

1937 - 1942 Mrs. H. S. Overman. 

1942 - Miss Annabelle Hollowell. 

January 6, 1943 - 1944 Miss Marie Roberts who served not only 
as Financial Secretary-Treasurer, but also as Director of Young People. 
The Church then returned to volunteer personnel for the Treasury De- 
partment. 

102 



1944 - 1950 E. E. Hollowell, Treasurer 

1950 - J. C. Abbott, Treasurer who like his revered father, has 
always served efficiently for more than ten years. Following is his report 
for the last fiscal year, September 31, 1950 - October 1, 1960 showing 
adopted budget, actual receipts and disbursements and the adopted bud- 
get for the fiscal year 1960-1961: 



First Baptist Church 
Financial Report and Budget Proposal 



Receipts 

Envelopes 

Plate 

Sunday School 

Annie Armstrong Offering 

Lottie Moon Offering 

Heck-Jones Memorial Offering 

State Missions Offering 

Zack Deal Offering 

Woman's Missionary Union 

Building Fund 

Miscellaneous 

Revival 

Baptist Children's Home 

Home for the Aging 

Baptist Hospital 

Biblical Recorder Subscriptions 

Christian Education 

Vacation Bible School 



Buget 
1959-60 

$32,000.00 
2,000.00 
4,000.00 
572.00 
902.00 
332.00 
426.00 
120.00 
600.00 

— o — 
— o — 



$40,952.00 



Actual 
1959-60 

$31,198.78 

1,967.09 

3,874.84 

581.56 

1,120.08 

334.74 

426.00 

120.00 

600.00 

3,785.50 

214.44 

246.45 

138.24 

50.55 

213.72 

88.00 

15.00 

75.49 

$45,050,48 



Proposed 
Budget 
1960-61 

$32,500.00 

2,100.00 

4,000.00 

635.00 

1,001.00 

368.00 

473.00 

120.00 

600.00 

78.00 



$41,875.00 



Mission Expenditures 

Cooperative Program 

Association 

Local 

Missionary's Salary and 

American Bible Society 
Annie Armstrong Offering 
Lottie Moon Offering 
Heck-Jones Memorial Offering 
State Missions Offering 



3,500.00 


3,389.65 


3,500.00 


600.00 


619.10 


600.00 


250.00 


149.53 


250.00 


1,060.00 


1,059.40 


1,060.00 


572.00 


581.56 


635.00 


902.00 


1,120.08 


1,001.00 


332.00 


334.74 


368.00 


426.00 


426.00 


473.00 



lO.' 



Zack Deal Orphanage 
Woman's Missionary Union 
Baptist Children's Home 
Homes for the Aging 
Baptist Hospital 
Christian Education 



Sub-Total 
Building Fund 
Biblical Recorder 
Surplus 



120.00 
600.00 



120.00 
600.00 
138.24 

50.55 
213.72 

15.00 



Total - Expenditures 



$15,802.00 
$40,952.00 

— o — 
840,952.00 



$15,061.33 

$40,441.90 

4,500.00 

88.00 

116.55 

$45,146.45 



120.00 
600.00 





$ 8,362.00 


$ 8,817.57 


$ 8,607.00 


Current Expenditures 








Salaries 








Pastor 


$ 6,300.00 


$ 6,300.00 


$ 6,600.00 


Minister of Education 


3,300.00 


3,300.00 


3,300.00 


Minister of Music 


2,700.00 


2,475.00 


2,880.00 


Secretary 


1,320.00 


1,320.00 


1,320.00 


Organist 


768.00 


768.00 


768.00 


Sexton 


2,400.00 


2,400.00 


2,400.00 




$16,788.00 


$16,563.00 


$17,268.00 


General 








Miscellaneous 


957.00 


863.59 


805.00 


Sunday School 


1,620.00 


1,466.69 


1,645.00 


Office 


2,000.00 


2,168.31 


2,000.00 


Heat, Light and Power 


2,500.00 


2,201.78 


2,500.00 


Utilities, Parsonage 


900.00 


856.02 


900.00 


Supply and Revival 


500.00 


644.79 


500.00 


Convention 


325.00 


464.77 


375.00 


Music and Choir 


400.00 


107.20 


400.00 


Insurance 


1,000.00 


1,293.26 


1,250.00 


Library 


100.00 


20.00 


100.00 


Repairs 


4,000.00 


4,303.34 


4,000.00 


Assemblies 


400.00 


255.00 


400.00 


Audio-Visual Education 


150.00 


104.58 


150.00 


Ministerial Association 


100.00 


50.00 


100.00 


Training Union 


150.00 


— 


225.00 


Nursery 


300.00 


262.00 


300.00 


Interest 


200.00 


— 


— o — 


Religious Education 


100.00 


— o — 


250.00 


Brotherhood 


100.00 


-0- 


100.00 



$16,000.00 
$41,875.00 



$41,875.00 



Excess of Expenditures over Receipts for year $ 95.97 



104 



CHAPTER XII 
Frequency of Preaching 

During the first 21 years of the Church's history it appears from 
what meager records there are available, preaching services were rather 
haphazardly held; depending upon traveling or itinerate ministers to 
drop in at their will or convenience to preach. The Church depended 
upon Elder Thomas Etheridge more than anyone else and his name is 
recorded as "occasional pastor" who "usually administered the ordi- 
nances." But, he was a very busy preacher and he had no degree of 
regularity in his services to the Church. 

Not until 1809 can we say tliat the Church had preaching services 
at regular or stated times. Although extant records show clearly that 
John Rowe was the "stated" pastor they do not tell us the frequency of 
his preaching services. However, being tlie "stated" pastor we naturally 
infer he had regular times for preaching. It is very unlikely that he 
preached more than one Sunday in the month. 

The 1840 Associational minutes give us the first definite infor- 
mation as to the Church's frequency of preaching services. Services may 
have been held more often than once a month before 1840. The minutes 
do not say but Evans Forbes' pastorate from 1840 to 1844 was for the 
second and fourth Sundays and Saturdays before. 

In 1847 we dropped back to only one Sunday in the month - the 
fourth Lord's Day. 

In 1851, during the pastorate of C. R. Hendrickson, services were 
held every Sunday. How long before and after 1851 that every Sunday 
services were held we do not know. 

On August 5, 1865 "Dr. Overby was asked to be pastor another 
year." He accepted to preach twice a month for $400.00. The Negro mem- 
bers were then using the meeting house one Sunday in the month. 

On January 5, 1867 "Brother Cobb to use his own discretion in 
preaching at otlier churches in order to raise his support." This indicates 
that the Church was certainly not on full time during Cobbs pastorate. 



103 



The Church decided on July 4, 1868 to change the time for busi- 
ness conference from Saturday before the first Sunday to Saturday before 
tlie fourth Sunday, but in 1869 R. R. Overby was called back to preach 
every fourth Sunday and Saturday before and every Sunday night. 

August 23, 1870. "On motion to have preaching every Sunday and 
raise the pastor's salary." But on November 26 Dr. Overby was asked to 
ser\'e anotlier year and allowed to make his own arrangements as to time 
of preaching. This appears that tiie Church wanted preaching every 
Sunday but it being learned that Overby could not serve every Sunday, 
the Church wanted him as pastor even tliough he could not serve but 
part time. 

The minutes of December 22, 1877 say "Brother Luke (J. M. C.) as 
requested, answered what he thought he could do during the next year, 
and reply was: one Saturday and Sunday and three Sunday nights in 
each month. Accepted." On July 26, 1879 Dr. R. R. Speed, physician, 
advocated "communion on Sunday of every monthly meeting" indicating 
that there was only one meeting a month at that time, however the De- 
cember 27, 1879 minutes reveal a previously appointed committee "re- 
ported they could get Rev. J. M. C. Luke, present pastor, one Saturday, 
two Sundays and every Sunday night for the year 1880." On February 24, 
1881 "Committee reported that Rev. J. M. C. Luke agreed to preach one 
Saturday and Sunday morning and three Sunday nights in tlie month for 
the sum of $300.00 for the present year, 1881." This was probably the 
Sunday nights that he had not preached in the morning, giving the 
Church one service each Sunday. 

October 21, 1882 "On motion ... to have preaching every Sunday 
and Sunday night for the ensuing year." Later, this motion was rescinded 
because it was learned that Brother Luke could not give the Church full 
time. This was probably due to ill health because the record shows that 
he was given extended leave of absences during his pastorate and earnest 
prayer was made for him in his affliction. 

The Associational minutes of 1884 show the Church was on full 
time preaching. It has been so ever since and was the first Church in the 
Association to go to full time preaching on a permanent basis. 

106 



CHAPTER XIII 

The Baptistry 
and the Ordinance of Baptism 

Like most meeting houses of those early days neither of our pre- 
vious ones had built-in baptistries. In the memory of some of our mem- 
bers, Pasquotank River was used and probably had been from the begin- 
ning of Baptist churches in this and Camden Counties. They remember 
that our Church baptized at a point in close proximity to Hunter Street. 

Our present sanctuary was the first in this section of the State to 
have a baptistry in its original plans and it was located back of the pul- 
pit. Since then it has been moved four times. 

The first move was in 1896 when the present pipe organ was pur- 
chased. On May 3, 1896 the deacons recommended that "the baptistry 
be thoroughly repaired when it is moved to make place for the organ, 
(Baptistry) to be to front and below choir loft." Previously, the old reed 
organ and choir were located in the northeast corner of the auditorium, 
but the new arrangements were for the organ to be in the back, the choir 
to be between the organ and the pulpit and the baptistry to be under- 
neath the choir floor. It was while in this location that on February 2, 
1910 the Church in conference "appointed W. J. Broughton to have water 
connections made to tlie baptistry and heating system." Thus, the first 
heated water for baptismal purpose. 

The second move appears to have been in 1921. It had been dis- 
covered that it was in so close proximity to the organ that its dampness 
had damaged tlie organ and on February 27 we find the following recom- 
mendation from the deacons: "That steps be taken to remove the baptistry 
from under the organ (Actually, it was not directly under the organ but 
too close to it)." However, nothing was done about it until after July 31 
of that year, because on that date a "Committee on repairs to heating 
plant, baptistry, etc. reported that the proper disposition of the heating 
plant will require that the pit (Heating plant pit) be so enlarged as to 
take in the space now occupied by the baptistry, thus necessitating soon- 

107 



er or later tlie removal and construction of a new baptistry. Committee 
authorized to proceed according to their best judgment." The committee 
evidently then moved the baptistry further to the front, away from the 
organ; and, as some remember, it was placed under the pulpit rostrum. 

Third move was authorized on September 5, 1928 "That the fol- 
lowing improvements be made: New choir loft, baptistry, pulpit platform, 
putting tlie organ back in the arch (That is between the choir and the 
pulpit) . . . estimated cost of $3,218.00." This time the baptistry was return- 
ed to the back but at a higher elevation than its original location which 
made for clarity of view by the congregation. It was here that Mrs. I. M. 
Meekins painted on its wall a lovely river scene with a mountainous 
background for which the Church in conference on December 9, 1928 "ex- 
tended thanks to her for this excellent gift of art." Deep wine colored 
drapes were hung on each side and kept tied back which added beauty 
and color to the painting. 

The picture given next is of the baptistry at this location as it ap- 
peared on Thanksgiving, 1948 and includes the chancel choir and partici- 
pants in the Thanksgiving service. Pastor Finlator is shown at the read- 
ers far right. 



108 




2*1 jt. 't' 






' ' ■^''^^'•'■ 



' ' i'^ 






109 



The fourth and last re-location was in remodeling and dividing 
the chancel in 1954. The space between the sanctuary and educational 
building was filled in which, among other advantages made room for a 
deep chancel; and the baptistry naturally was moved farther back with 
the deepening of the chancel. This move necessitated the sacrifice of 
Mrs. Meekins' painting for one on canvas which is also one of beauty and 
as realistic as any this writer has had the privilege of viewing. The new, 
deep and divided chancel seemed of greater importance than the wall 
painting which we feel sure Mrs. Meekins, seeing the improvement, 
would agree to. Instead of being kept open and in view at all times as 
was the former baptistry and painting, this one is concealed behind 
beautiful wall panelling finished in rich walnut color which is removable 
and the baptistry is not exposed except during baptismal services. This, 
if we may impose our opinion, is as it should be. As much as we believe 
in the ordinance of baptism as practiced by the Baptists it is not the 
central point in all worship services, not even in obtaining salvation for 
that matter. And yet, exhibiting the baptistry continuously during the 
services tends to give one who does not know better the impression that 
that is what Baptists believe. Exhibiting it only during baptismal services, 
it seems should suffice. 

First mention in the minutes of a Baptismal Committee was on 
April 7, 1909. The Committee was composed of Mrs. S. W. Gregory, Mrs. 
E. C. Cherry and Mrs. E. W. Stone, wife of the pastor. No furtlier men- 
tion was found of such a committee but in all probability tliere has been 
a similar committee most of the time since. The present committee is 
composed of W. W. Garrett, Cecil Basnight, Mrs. Bay Jones, Jr., and 
Mrs. Wilbert West. 

The ordinance of baptism and the baptismal service. Our mode of 
baptism of course is, and we hope always will be, by immersion. How- 
ever, in the old days, according to the Burkitt and Read, History of the 
Kehukee Association, some Baptist Societies practiced dipping the per- 
son forwards rather than backwards and criticized those Societies who 
dipped backwards, saying by way of ridicule, they have no opinion of 
persons going to heaven backwards. To tliis criticism and ridicule Burkitt 



111 



and Read replied: "Our mode is to dip him discretely backwards" and 
that "the scriptures call baptism a burial, Romans VI :4; and we all know 
that it is not customary to bury people witli tlieir faces downward." 
What Rurkitt and Read's position was on the question of baptismal sal- 
vation we do not know, but they might have added that their critics 
nor anyone else would get to heaven either by being baptized foi-wards 
or backwards and that the ordinance is only an outward symbol of an 
inward cleansing. 

Whether tliis Church, the old Knobbscrook Church in Rurkitt and 
Read's time, was one of the societies who baptized forwards is not of 
record, but none of our oldest members ever heard of it. We do know 
that our present day practice is in accordance with the mode employed 
by Rurkitt and Read to "dip him discretely backwards" and that no one 
seeing the ordinance administered in our Church could think of the in- 
spiring symbol except in terms of solemn consecration to the principle 
of dying to the world, being buried with Christ and rising to a new life 
in Him. 

Our pastors, as far back as I have known the Church have con- 
ducted most impressive services and have baptized gracefully, discretely. 
Our present pastor, Maurice W. Grissom, uses a very impressive candle- 
lighting feature in connection with the services. A candle for each candi- 
date is placed in a row on the altar table in front of the baptistry and an 
extra one is placed in the middle. A vested person stands at each end of 
the table and takes turns in lighting the candles. When a candidate is 
baptized a candle is lighted, symbolizing the burning Christian light 
which he resolves to carry henceforth. When all candidates have been 
baptized tlie middle candle is left unlighted and an obvious invitation 
to any unbaptized person in the congregation to take a like stand for 
Christ which the pastor prays may soon be accepted. 



112 



CHAPTER XIV 

The Memorial Supper 

First reference in our minutes to the memorial supper was on 
October 2, 1869 "On motion we take up a collection for the purpose of 
purchasing bread and wine." 

Most Baptist churches of that day and time holding preaching 
services only once per month, observed the memorial supper quarterly, on 
Saturday morning before tlie following Sunday preaching service. This 
service followed the quarterly conference and a preaching service. How- 
ever, on July 26, 1879 "Notice was given that Brother R. R. Speed (A 
physician) would propose at the August conference to commune on Sun- 
day of every monthly meeting (Instead of quarterly, on Saturday as had 
apparently been the custom)." 

The matter was not mentioned in the August minutes, but was 
vetoed at the September 27, 1879 conference. The Disciples of Christ de- 
nomination, which have a Baptist background and heritage, were be- 
coming strong in Eastern North Carolina about that time. They observed 
the memorial supper at every Sunday morning preaching service - still 
do - and Dr. Speed probably got his idea from them. 

Churches later turning to every Sunday preaching adopted only 
one service in each month for the memorial supper and ours chose the 
fourth Sunday morning service which continued until January 16, 1921 
when it was changed to the evening service of the same Sunday. On July 
17 of that year the Church returned to the morning service and has con- 
tinued until now. Actually, it does not matter how frequent or when the 
ordinance is observed - only it should not be neglected too long. The 
decision of this Church to observe the supper at the morning service 
probably was because of a larger attendance. However, one of our recent 
pastors, W. W. Finlator, occasionally administered tlie ordinance at the 
evening service for the benefit of a few who attended the evening service 
and were unable for various reasons to attend in the morning. 



113 



Through the years this ordinance has been called: The Lord's 
Supper, which was indeed His last passover supper with the apostles; 
communion, which is not incorrect because it was truly a communion of 
a spiritual nature by the apostles with each other and between them and 
Jesus, their best Friend; also, the memorial supper, which is probably 
more nearly correct because Jesus said "as oft as ye do this do it in re- 
membrance of me." 

Unfortunately, there have been times when many members for 
some reason absented themselves from the memorial supper, no matter 
when it was observed; or, if they did sit through it, never participated in 
it. Absences were so much in evidence at one time that the Church under- 
took to discipline members who persistently stayed away; taking the 
position that if they did not care and were no longer interested they were 
not worthy to be members. The minutes of December 7, 1898 show: 
"ordered a thousand cards be printed (These were later donated by E. F. 
Aydlett) and used for the purpose of noting those present at communion 
services." The purpose was probably not to reward those who did attend 
so much as it was to check against the membership to determine who 
habitually stayed away, in order that they might be dealt witli. This pro- 
cedure was somewhat paradoxical to our views today, and may even ap- 
pear in the humorous vein, but our fathers and grandfathers thought 
that it had merit. 

Many of us can remember flocks of our members leaving the 
service when the memorial supper was about to be administered. Some 
probably because the minister had encroached upon their noon meal 
time or some plans for the afternoon. Others may be because they were 
just plain not interested any more. Knowing of our practice of closed 
communion in the long ago, most visitors left the service because they 
obviously felt their presence was not desired. But in recent years we have 
changed. 

As stated in another chapter, when our Church was constituted it 
was admitted as a member of the Kehukee Association which was pat- 
terned after the doctrines and practices of the Philadelphia Association 



114 



of predestinationists and closed communionists. Although many Baptist 
churches of this area including our own a half century later became what 
we know today as Missionary Baptist churches as opposed to anti-mis- 
sionary Baptist churches, they still restricted their communion "to those 
of the same faith and order." Only in this generation have Baptist begun 
to omit that unscriptural and hoped to be forgotten term. If it has been 
used within the past thirty years since I have known the Church I do 
not remember it. On the contrary, our most recent pastors have openly 
and freely invited all Christians to join us at, not ours, but the Lord's 
table. Furthermore, the services in which the memorial supper is observ- 
ed rarely run longer than other worship services. With these changes in 
belief and practice, seldom does one leave when the supper is about to 
be administered; all of which is a strong indication that our people and 
those who visit with us more deeply appreciate the spiritual value of the 
memorial supper and enjoy it more than ever. 

Not until around the turn of the century were individual cups for 
the worshipers beginning to come into use. Each one sipped from the 
same cup which was not only dangerous from the standpoint of spreading 
disease germs, but it was also very time consuming. The first mention in 
our minutes of an individual communion service was on May 7, 1905: 
"Brother Duke reports an offer through Mr. Gale, a jeweler in Norfolk, 
Virginia, to present the Church an individual communion set. A motion 
that it be accepted. After discussion is adopted, twenty-seven to one." 
This service evidently for some reason was never received or if it was it 
proved to be inadequate or unsatisfactory, because on June 27, 1906, 
just a little over a year later, the "Ladies Aid Society inquired if they 
may procure an individual communion set and sell whatever of the pres- 
ent set will not then be needed and on motion they are authorized to do 
so." On November 7, 1906 tliey "reported money in hand with which to 
purchase an individual communion set" and on August 7, 1907 "vote of 
thanks extended to the Ladies Aid Society for the communion set pre- 
sented to tlie Church." From reading the minutes the writer got the feel- 
ing that there was more opposition to the change than was specifically 
set down in the minutes, probably from the "old heads," but Mrs. Clate 



115 



Aydlett who helped to raise the money, stated that Brother so-an-so "al- 
ways sat where he was first to be served and almost everybody - young 
and old - was tired of sipping after his mustache." The pitcher and cup 
or cups as the case may have been were first called a communion set, 
but later and until today they are referred to as a communion service. 

As is well known, Baptists have always partaken of the memorial 
supper while seated in their pews in contrast to some other denominations 
whose worshipers assemble at the altar. Actually, there is no scriptural 
contention either way; it is a matter of choice or convenience. Baptists 
have chosen to remain seated while the deacons pass the bread and the 
wine to them. Each worshiper holds the bread and the cup until all have 
been served and then all partake at the same time, following the lead of 
the minister. When the wine has been drunk the cups are placed in re- 
ceptacles provided on the back of the pews. To deaden the noise of all 
the cups being placed in tlie receptacles at the same time, most churches 
who are financially able, fit into the receptacles a velvet or rubber lining. 
This has been provided in our Church by the family of the late deacon 
T. O. Bundy (See Memorials). 

The ordinance of the memorial supper in this Church has, as far 
back as this writer has known it, been conducted in such a sacred and 
dignified manner as to reflect its true meaning and it is well attended, 
pro\1ng tliat die people really have their hearts in it and go away much 
strengthened in the Lord. 



116 



CHAPTER XV 

Disciplining of the Members 

The very earliest minutes now available, 1857, show that from that 
time forth for approximately half a century the Church maintained a very 
rigid discipline over its members. It is evident that the minutes previous 
to 1857, which tradition tells us were lost in a fire, were also repleat with 
accounts of dealing with faultering members, because the strictness re- 
vealed in those earliest available minutes would hardly have begun 
abruptly in 1857. The Church was then seventy-one years old and chances 
are it adhered to strict rules of discipline from its constitution until well 
into this century. 

Being lax as we are now, it is amazing that there was rarely ever 
a monthly or quarterly conference in those days (And some special con- 
ferences for that specific purpose) in which some steps were not taken 
to discipline some member or members, not even excluding pastors or 
other ministers and their families, for some alleged wrong doing. There 
were a few regular conferences in which tlie entire time was taken up in 
dealing with delinquent members. In the following report adopted when 
the Church was about to deal witli one, is seen an attempt to show no 
favors but be absolutely fair in citing everyone who failed to live up to 
his or her Christian profession: "That we hold such conditions as these 
unfortunate and unpleasant but that when they arise they should be met 
in the spirit of Christian charity, patiently investigated and justly deter- 
mined; we hold further that nothing short of manly and Christian firm- 
ness should obtain, whether the parties be ignorant and poor or affluent 
and wise; that no man is greater than the organization to which he has 
pledged his allegiance, more particularly a Baptist Church." 

One of the first items on tlie regular monthly or quarterly confer- 
ence agenda was to call for references. "References were called for," as 
it is recorded in tlie minutes. This was for tlie purpose of allowing any 
member present who wished to vouch for the Christian conduct or state 
the known reasons for absences of any other member or members as the 
roll was called. 



117 



Expulsions and Withdrawals of Fellowship 

The following quotations of actions taken by the Church against 
its offending members are just a few of the many and are generally, but 
not strictly, chronological. Names are omitted because tlie quotations are 
only to show the trend of offenses and actions taken. It is apparent that 
many were accused and expelled, dismissed or fellowship withdrawn 
"on the spot" while it is also noted that many investigating committees 
were named and the Church acted upon their reports. 

Somewhat late in the period the Church moved "that all cases of 
discipline be first reported to the deacons so that no brother or sister be 
publicly accused or charged until the case shall have been investigated 
by the board of deacons and the church conference may act upon the 
report of the deacons." 

The matter of discipline seemed to be too important and pro- 
nounced in the church life of our forefathers for us to omit at least a 
part of it from the written history of the Church: 

"To drop from the roll all members who had not attended services 
and whose addresses could not be found." 

"Sister . . . expelled because she broke tlie seventh commandment." 

"Rule made to exclude all male members who shall wilfully ab- 
sent themselves from nine conferences (Monthly) in succession without 
any excuse, verbal or written, and their names taken from the regular 
roll and placed on the missing or lost list." A few months later a more 
rigid motion was passed: "Wlien a member misses nine conferences he 
be placed on the dead, lost, dismissed and expelled list." 

"Brethren . . . (Three) were expelled for unchristian-like conduct 
and the pastor was requested to publicly make it known at the Sunday 
morning service." 

"Brother . . . expelled because he refused to pay his pledge to the 
Church." 



118 



"Committee appointed to wait on Brother . . . and . . . for immoral- 
ity." 

"A charge against Brotlier ... for getting drunk and other im- 
moralities. On motion excluded from the Church." 

"On motion Brother . . . was expelled from the Church for dis- 
orderly conduct." 

"A charge of profanity against . . . Committee appointed to wait 
on him and order him to be present for trial at the next conference." 

"Committee on . . . for dnmkenness reported. He was expelled." 

"Committee on . . . for drunkenness reported guilty. He was ex- 
pelled and the committee discharged." 

"Sister . . . being allowed until this conference to consider her dis 
orderly conduct, failed to appear and was expelled." 

"On motion Brother . . . was expelled for unchristian conduct." 

"On motion Brother . . . having been taken prisoner of war, the 
charge was suspended until he returns." 

"On motion . . . were appointed a committee to wait on Brother 
. , . for playing cards." 

One brother confessed to fighting and by "his request he was for- 
given" but at the next conference he "was expelled for immorality." 

"Committee reported Brother . . . having been drunk again and 
on motion he was expelled." 

"Committee in the case of Brother . . . for immorality reported. 
He was expelled." 

"On motion . . . was expelled for immorality." 

"Brother . . . was requested to be present at next conference to 
answer to a charge of unchristian conduct. Committee later reported 
and he was expelled." 



119 



"Brother ... to appear at next conference and answer a charge of 
immorahty. Committee reported at next conference that he had con- 
fessed and he was expelled." 

"Committee on . . . for using profanity reported and he was ex- 
pelled from the Church." 

"Brother . . . was expelled from the Church for unchristian con- 
duct." 

"Deacons instructed to see Brother . . ., Senior, and wife and Bro- 
ther . . ., Junior, and wife (Father and son) and request them to appear 
at our next conference and answer to a charge of being in an unchristian 
manner; and inform them that if they are not present the conference will 
proceed to try them." 

"Moved that the two hundred delinquents be summoned to attend 
our next conference and show cause for their having failed to contribute 
to our Church expenses or be expelled." 

"Brother . . . summoned to appear for profane language." 

"Sister . . . was expelled for having joined the Methodist Church." 
The next year there were several others expelled at one meeting for 
the same reason. 

"Sister . . . was expelled for immoral conduct." 

"Brother . . . expelled for violating the seventh commandmant." 

"Brother ... to be notified that he is still a member of this Church 
and will be held accountable if his letter of dismission is not deposited." 

"A committee was appointed to see Brother . . . and see why he 
has not deposited his letter of dismission." (A few years later the Church 
passed a motion "that all letters granted by this Church stand good for 
only six months."). 

"Sister . . . expelled for violating the seventh commandment." 

"Sister . . . expelled for gross immoral conduct." 



120 



"On motion Brother ... be expelled for covetousness." 

At one conference three cases were expelled for immoral conduct 
and at the next Brother . . . was expelled for fornication." 

The first recording of withdrawal of fellowship was in the 1870's, 
and it was for drunkenness, profanity and immoral conduct." At the same 
conference the same action was taken in a case for "general immoral 
and unchristian conduct." 

"On motion it is apparent that Brother . . . has been guilty of 
gross unchristian conduct in conference. Therefore, be it resolved that 
he apologize to the Church or that failing to do so he be instantly ex- 
pelled; as he did not apologize he was expelled." 

"On motion this Church withdrew fellowship from . . . for un- 
christian conduct." 

A previously appointed committee "reported Brother . . . had been 
seen. He confessed guilt of profanity and did not apologize. On motion 
fellowship was withdrawn." 

"On motion Brother . . . and wife be and are expelled for non- 
christian conduct." Previously the tenn "unchristian conduct" has been 
used. 

"On motion the Church withdraw fellowship from Sister . . . for 
keeping a disorderly house." 

". . . expelled for non-attendance and non-payment of dues." 

At one conference six members were expelled for dancing or hav- 
ing dancing in thir homes. 

On motion . . . was expelled for unchristian conduct." 

"On motion Brother . . . was excluded (Another first term) for non- 
payment of dues." 

"On motion . . . was excluded for unchristian conduct." 

"Brother . . . having taken employment in a barroom requested 



121 



that the fellowship of the Church be withdrawn from him and on motion 
his request was granted." 

At one conference fellowship was withdrawn from seventeen per- 
sons but no mention in the minutes of why the actions were taken. 

A called conference "to hear the report of committee to investigate 
the misbehavior in Church during time of worship. After discussion it 
was agreed not to make the names of the offenders public, but appoint 
a committee to wait on each of those reported and ask them to desist 
and at tlie same time inform them tliat upon a repetition they will be 
turned over to the civil authorities for their action." Mrs. Clate Aydlett 
tells me that when she was a little girl some young people were repri- 
manded for eating peanuts in the balcony during worship service and 
Mrs. Cora Twiddy relates that one pastor in the middle of his sermon 
called some young people to sit on the front seats for the balance of the 
service. 

One Brother . . . was accused of using opium; cited a number of 
times. Finally, moved away and was again accused of the same with the 
additional charge of dishonesty. A letter begging that he be not expelled 
was read by the pastor. But he offered no assurance of making ammends 
and "on motion he was expelled for the use of opium and dishonesty. 

Defiant Members 

The minutes reveal a few instances of members apparently aware 
of the certainty of having to answer to the Church, and having no scru- 
ples against doing what they did, confessed guilt in conference and asked 
no pardon and requested expulsion: 

Brother . . . was appointed to wait on Brother ... as to report he 
had used profane language." Two months hence he "confessed guilt (In 
conference) and asked no pardon, but requested his name be at once 
erased from the Church book. He was expelled." 

"Sister . . . charged with unchristian conduct, which was acknow- 
leged and at her request Church fellowship was withdrawn from her." 



122 



"Brother . . . reported, and he desires to be expelled. By unanimous 
vote he was expelled." 

"Sister . , . requests tliat the fellowship of the Church be with- 
drawn from her (No reason stated) and on motion her request was 
granted." 

We cannot say how clear the evidence was in any case presented 
by previously appointed committees or in any case "tried" by the Church 
without the benefit of committee investigation (And there were many 
cases apparently handled both ways). Clerks were unable of course to 
record details and even if they had been able it would have been unwise, 
hence the records are very terse and it is hard for us to judge whether 
the Church dealt justly in every case or not. 

However, the minutes show equally as many instances of mercy 
and forgiveness, many of which I have quoted below. But at this point, 
between the above actions and the actions showing forgiveness and 
mercy, it is important to read John 8:7-11 "He that is witliout sin among 
you, let him first cast a stone at her . . . woman, where are those thine 
accusers? hath no man condemned thee? Neither do I condemn thee: go 
and sin no more." Also Galatians 6:1 "If a man be overtaken in a fault, 
ye which are spiritual restore such an one in the spirit of meekness; con- 
sidering thyself, lest thou also be tempted." These passages of the Script- 
ure give us a clear conception of what should or should not have been 
done by our forefathers. On the contrary, the line of demarkation be- 
t^/veen the church member and the nonchurch member becomes dimmer 
with the passing years and in order for the Church to maintain its identity 
as a distinct Christian body, it may again some day have to grapple 
positively with the problem of neglect and waywardness of a large seg- 
ment of our constituency as did those who lived before us. 

Forgiveness and Reinstatements 

"Brother . . . confessed immorality and promised to do better in 
the future and was reinstated." 

"Mr. and Mrs. . . were accused. He was excused and she expelled." 

123 



Four months later "she was forgiven." 

"The conference agreed to forgive the female members of the 
Church for their nonattendance and the deacons were excused from 
further notifying them of the same. It appears that the deacons were re- 
quired to cite members - male and female - for nonattendance. The con- 
ference probably had its reasons for excusing the female members, but 
male members, under some conditions should have been excused also. 

"Three were charged with disorderly conduct (Dancing). Two were 
dismissed. One was sorry for having danced, etc. and on motion was ex- 
cused." 

"Committee appointed to wait on Brother . . . for renting a build- 
ing for a bar reported; and on motion he was excused." 

"Brother . . . was cited for nonattendance to services and duties." 
The conference doubtless took his case under advisement, because min- 
utes of the next conference show that he was excused." 

The committee "reports again on Brother . . . begging the Church 
to cover all with the mantle of charity, believing that his erring was of 
the head and not of the heart. At the same meeting he was granted a 
letter of dismissal. The term "reports again" indicates that there had been 
previous charges of like nature (No description of charges given) yet 
the committee seemed to have abiding sympathy and confidence. 

One brother was cited so many times for drinking and cursing I 
stopped making notes of them as I read through the minutes. He was 
charged, excused and forgiven; charged and expelled, etc. The pastor 
at one conference made an appeal for him and the conference "nealt in 
prayer in his behalf." Finally, he was once more reinstated and granted 
a letter to join another nearby Baptist Church. 

"Brother . . . was excused for having dancing in his home." 

"Committee on the case of Brother . . . reported that they had 
seen him and being repentant it was ordered that he be excused." 

"Committee on the case of Brother . . . reported he was repentant. 

124 



He was excused and reinstated into the Church." 

"The case of Brother . . . being present, confessed to being drunk 
on one occasion and promised if possible to refrain from it and on motion 
he was forgiven." 

"Committee appointed to investigate Brother . . . for immoraHty." 
He was present at tlie next conference to give his defense and the min- 
utes show that he "was excused." 

"Committee reported on the case of Brother ... he was sorry for 
his sin (Not designated) and promised to do it no more. He was forgiven." 

"Brother . . . was excused from paying his dues." 

"Committee appointed to see Brother . . . and see why he does not 
attend Church." The committee reported at tlie next conference they "had 
seen Brotlier . . . and he said he had reasons but would not give tliem 
to tlie committee. Another committee appointed to get his reasons." This 
committee reported at tlie next conference but the brother's reasons were 
not listed. Anyway, he was excused. 

"Brother . . . was excused for his offense against the Church." 

"Brother . . . (Having been seen by a committee) came before the 
Church, confessed to drunkenness, begged pardon and was on motion 
forgiven." 

Often members were excused from paying dues or subscriptions, 
or were given more time. One brother was "exonerated from his assess- 
ment by paying One Dollar a year until he could do better." From this 
entry it would seem tliat in that day each and every member was requir- 
ed to contribute something, be it so small as only One Dollar a year, 
which is as it should be. 

At one Satiuxlay conference (In the early days conferences were 
alwa\s on Saturday before the regular preaching Sunday) nineteen mem- 
bers were excused for nonattendance, dancing or having dancing in their 
houses. 



125 



"Brotlier . . .was brought before tlie Church for uncliristian con- 
duct and on motion was excused." 

"Brother . . . made his excuse and was unanimously excused." 

"Committee reported on Brother . . . and he was on motion excus- 
ed." 

"Brotlier . . . makes confession of wrong which he has done since 
last conference and asks pardon. On motion it is granted." 

The brother reported above for taking employment in a barroom 
and requested the Church to withdraw fellowship from him; now, one 
month later, "acknowledged his wrong and asks the Church to restore 
him. On motion it is done." 

"At this point Brother . . . rises to make a personal statement. He 
says that he has used language not proper for a Christian and asks that 
the Church forgi\'e him, which is freely done." 

Settling Disputes Between Members 

This is discipline of a different nature and there are enough en- 
tries in the minutes to list a few: 

Matthew 18:15-17 "If a brother shall trespass against thee, go and 
tell him his fault bet^^•een tiiee and him: If he shall hear thee, thou has 
gained thy brother. But if he shall not hear thee, then take one or two 
more that in the mouth of two or tliree witnesses e\"ery word may be 
established. And if he shall neglect to hear tliem, tell it unto tlie Church: 
but if he neglect to hear tlie Church, let him be unto thee as an heathen 
man and a publican." 

"Brother . . . and wife ordered to appear before the Church at the 
next conference because they failed to ask Church help in settling a mat- 
ter (Not specified) before taking it into court." The next conference min- 
utes do not show disposition of tliis case. 

"Committee appointed to see Sister . . . and Sister . . . and order 
tliem to appear before the next conference and answer to a charge of 



126 



fighting." No further entries were found to show disposition of the case. 

"On motion a committee consisting of . . . was appointed to settle 
the differences between the famihes of . . ." 

"Committee appointed to investigate a charge of slander by Bro- 
ther . . . against Brother . . ." Another committee at the same time was 
appointed "to draw up resolutions to spread upon the minutes of the 
Church to tlie effect tliat their belief is that Brother ... is not guilty of 
anything pertaining to slander about Brother . . ." Two months later the 
first committee reported the charge to be "utterly false." 

Coming to the Aid of a Member Wrongfully Accused By An Outsider 

"On motion the following resolutions were adopted: 

Whereas we have seen it publicly stated that our Brother ... is 
charged with running his Church for worldly and personal ends; be it 
therefore resolved: 

1. That . . . has never attempted to run the Elizabeth City Baptist 
Church. Baptist chiirches are independent bodies in which the weakest 
man has the same rights and privileges as the strongest. 

2. That he has been of one of our most faithful workers. 

3. That we believe his has been a work of love and performed 
with the purest and best motives and we are unable to see how in any 
act performed by him there has been any opportunity to advance his 
personal ends. 

4. That a copy of these resolutions be published. 

A committee was appointed to see to it and the Church paid for 
the publication." 



127 



CHAPTER XVI 

Baptist Burial Ground 

The purpose of this chapter, as is the purpose of all chapters, is 
mainly to report as fully and accurately as possible from available records 
and the memory of older members and other interested citizens, the facts 
of historical interest to our Church. However, more is desired than a 
few pages of reading. We must admit that too much valuable information 
has been lost concerning many of those who have been laid to rest in 
our cemetery. 

The bodies of some of our most faithful members in ages past 
rest here - members who tlirough loyalty and sacrifice left us a priceless 
heritage. Doubtless some lesser lights, some faithful in other faiths or of 
no particular faith also rest here. They belong to the ages - they have 
gone to a by and by whence no man returns, but we have a certain 
respectful memory to keep and pass on to our children and to their child- 
ren who engage to worship here. We cannot in good conscience allow 
the Baptist burial ground, used actively for nearly a century to be for- 
ever forgotten. 

Church minutes indicate that long after cessation of burials 
here, care was taken of tlie grounds and some graves in particular. 
Fences were kept up and driveways provided. It is desirable and hoped 
tliat what information we have been able to piece together may in 
some way inspire and encourage us to catch up on this aspect of our 
Christian life and more adequately memorialize our beloved dead whose 
bodies were laid to rest in this hallowed ground. Perhaps, through 
proper procedure, move some to more suitable locations, more adequate- 
ly identify and mark a few, and erect in a suitable place a marble or 
bronze plaque bearing tlie names of those known to be underneath our 
buildings, also bearing an appropriate inscription to the unfortunately 
"Unknown Soldiers" of the cross whose names and graves have, over 
the years been allowed to get lost. 

The Church began assigning lots soon after Mr. Charles Grice 

128 



deeded to us tlie corner lot on October 1, 1805. Then soon after February 
8, 1860 when the Church purchased from Mr. George W. Bell the ad- 
joining lot to the west it began assigning lots there. Nothing is known, 
however, of its system of assignments - whether the lots were given or 
sold, whether certain priorities were allowed, etc. 

We have secured the names of as many as possible who were 
buried here and have listed them in alphabetical order below, including 
those known to have been moved to other cemeteries and have followed 
each name with as much pertinent information as could be obtained: 

Bland, Mrs. Virginia Casey. Born August 30, 1836 - died January 
6, 1889. For some unexplained reason her grave was in the rear of the 
lot now owned by Mr. Fred Markham, corner of Colonial Avenue and 
Dyer Street. Mr. Markham says that it was at the very north edge of 
the sidewalk laid out by the City in 1925 when Colonial Avenue was 
opened; and that he obtained permission from her grandson, the late 
Martin B. Simpson, Sr., and moved her grave further north west in the 
section now north of Colonial Avenue. Mrs. Harold S. Overman, a grand- 
daughter, has recently placed a marker to the gra\'e in its new location, 
pointed out to her by Mr. Markham. 

Five of Mrs. Bland's children were buried here but their graves 
are lost. It is very probable, however, that they were in close proximity 
to her original location and to the south and were among the twenty- 
four unidentified graves which Mrs. George W. Seyfert states were 
moved by the City to section 8, lot 64, Old Hollywood Cemetery in 1926 
in order to open Colonial Avenue, listed in order below: 

Bland, Charlie. Born February 1, 1864. Died June 21, 1864. 

Bland, Martha Adeline. Born May 14, 1865. Died June 30, 1865. 

Bland, Walter. Born May 28, 1866. Died August 30, 1866. 

Bland, Clarence O. Born August, 1859. Died in childhood - about 
11 years old. Dates not known. 

Also, a married daughter, Mrs. Mary E. (Mamie), Thomas, listed 
in order below. 

129 



Bowrid . . ., all that remains of the flat marker is two broken 
pieces lying near the west annex moved from the last site of the old 
parsonage. They bear the following inscription (What is left of it. The 
missing letters have been broken off and lost): 

Sacred 

. . . Memory of 

. . . Matilda 

. . . arles Bowrid . . . 

Age 24 . . . 

Bryant, Permelia. Died May 21, 1845, age 39. Consort of W. T. 
Bryant. Grave and marker in the section nortli of Colonial Avenue. 

Butler, Chloe. Born December, 1875. Date of death broken off 
and lost. Inscription on the remaining piece of tlie marker lying beside 
the west annex reveals her to have been tlie wife of Thomas W. Butler 
and the daughter of Jacob Mercer of Camden County. It also reveals 
that she was a mother. Sexton, Zack White, states that the broken piece 
of the marker was moved from tlie site of the old parsonage. He knows 
the approximate location. 

Ehringhaus, William Frederick Martin. Son of John and Matilda 
Ehringhaus (See Martin markers moved by tiie City to Section 8, Lot 64 
Old Hollywood in 1926 in order to open Colonial Avenue). 

Fearing, Israel. Died October 10, 1833, aged 72 years. (All 
Fearings here listed are in the section north of Colonial Avenue). 

Fearing, Mrs. Elizabeth Thatcher. Born September 3, 1762 and 
died in 1822. She was the wife of one Israel Fearing but according to 
Mrs. E. O. Baum, a lineal descendant, not the above listed Israel Fear- 
ing. At the time of her death she was a resident of Newport, Bhode 
Island and Mrs. Baum and Mrs. H. D. Walker both state that she was 
here on an extended visit at the time of her death. Both Mrs. Baum and 
this writer remember seeing Mrs. Fearing's marker but at the time of 
this writing it seems to be lost. Accompanying her here was a relative, 
Thatcher Swift, who also died while on the visit (See his name listed 
below). 

130 



Fearing, Harriett L. Died September 19, 1823, age 31 years. 

Goodman, Jethro D. Attorney and Counselor at law. Died Au- 
gust 2, 1814, age 29 years, 8 months and 12 days. (All Goodmans here 
listed are in tlie section north of Colonial Avenue) Near Jethro are: 

Goodman, Albert Gallatin. Bom October 16, 1811. Died Octo- 
ber 27, 1815. 

Goodman, George Littleton. Son of Jethro. Born August 24, 1810. 
Died September 15 following. 

Goodman, J. D. Marker broken and lying near the other Good- 
mans. Birth and death dates illegible. 

Ghildry, Robert. Born June 22, 1789 in Henrico County, Virginia. 
Died March 16, 1856. Grave and marker in section north of Colonial Ave. 

Harris, Jakey. Wife of Silvanus Harris. Died September 13, 1859, 
age 37 years and 8 months. Marker lies side of the west annex, having 
been moved from the last site of the old parsonage. Sexton Zack White 
knows the approximate location of the grave. 

Horton, . . . Ibert, son of Oliver . . . Age 29 years, 8 months and 
12 days. This is all of the marker tliat can be found and it is in the sect- 
ion north of Colonial Avenue. Could it be Elbert or Delbert or Gilbert, 
son of Oliver C. Horton a very useful and respected minister reared and 
ordained in this Church who was bom December 11, 1841 and died 
March 17, 1900 and buried in Old Hollywood? 

Hunter, Capt. Timothy. Born May 26, 1804 and died Febmar>' 
20, 1875. All of tlie Hunters, Mrs. Kellenger and the Weatherlys here 
listed, according to relatives, rest underneatli the present Educational 
Building, unless an unidentified cemented grave close to the south wall 
be one of them. Miss Annie Weatherly states that her father, W. H. 
Weatherly, Jr., upon the advice of Mr. Fred Ziegler, local mortician, 
gave the Church permission to erect the building over tlieir graves. 
Capt. Hunter married Ann Carmott of New Bern, North Carolina on 
November 15, 1826. She is listed next as Annie Hunter. To give us an 



131 



idea of the funeral customs of those days Miss Annie who has the 
family Bible consented to our use of the following notice (Invitation) 
of Capt. Hunter's funeral: 

The Burial Services of 

Captain Timothy Hunter will 

Take Place at the Baptist 

Burial Ground Sunday 28th Inst. 

10 o'clock A.M. 
The Friends and acquaintances of 
the Family are Invited to Attend. 

Hunter, Annie. Born 1809. Died December 25, 1892. Capt. and 
Mrs. Hunter's daughters, Caroline and Virginia, listed in order below, 
wives of Cornelius W. Kellenger and W. H. Weatherly, Sr., Esquire, re- 
spectively. 

Kellenger, Mrs. Caroline (Carrie) Hunter. We quote in part from 
a newspaper account of Mrs. Kellenger's funeral: "Died December 10, 
1867, consort of Deacon Cornelius W. Kellenger. She lies buried in the 
grounds near the Church and school house where her childish days of 
happiness in innocence were sported away. Funeral by Elder R. R. Over- 
by who delayed his trip to Wake Forest College to be its agent, to con- 
duct. " The school house referred to was the parsonage on the corner 
where the sanctuary now stands and used when not occupied by our 
pastors for a private school a great deal of the time. As stated above her 
tomb is underneath the Educational Building. Mr. Kellenger was buried 
in Elmwood cemetery, Norfolk, Virginia. Their son is listed next. 

Kellenger, Timmie. Died August 5 (Year not known, age 4 years, 
6 months and 29 days. 

Martin, Dr. William. Born August 1, 1785. Died October 9, 1835. 
Mrs. H. D. Walker informs us that Dr. Martin came here from Princess 
Ann County, Virginia and was the first physician to locate in this area. 
His gra\'e, as were those of all the Martins here listed was in the section 
which is now Colonial Avenue until moved to Section 8, Lot 64 Old 
Hollywood in 1926 in order to open the Avenue. 



132 



Martin, Mrs. Sophia Scott. Wife of Dr. Martin. Born April 23, 
1798. Died July 27, 1878. 

Martin, Peter D. Son of Dr. and Mrs. Martin. Died August 11, 
1827, age 3 years, 21 days. 

Martin, Mrs. Susanna. Relict of Rev. James G. Martin. Died 
July 20, 1815. Mr. Martin was also an attorney at law and practiced in 
Asheville after the Civil War. He was born February 14, 1819; died in 
Asheville October 4, 1878 and is believed to have been buried there. 

Also moved to the above section in Old Hollywood in order to 
connect Mattliews and Cherry Streets and open Colonial Avenue and 
believed to be connected in the Martin family were William Fredick 
Martin Ehringhaus, son of John and Matilda Ehringhaus, and Ellen 
Wirt Shepherd, daughter of Fredick B. and Susan Shepherd, both listed 
in order in this roster. 

Morgan, Mrs. Julia A. Born December 28, 1830. Died Decem- 
ber 22, 1878. Second wife of J. M. Morgan. All the Morgans here listed 
are resting in the Churchyard between the Educational Building and 
the west annex. 

Morgan, Dr. Albert S. Son of J. M. and his first wife, Elizabeth. 
Born October 11, 1844. Died January 2, 1879. He has a Masonic emblem 
on his marker. 

Morgan, J. R. O. Son of J. M. and Julia A. Morgan. Born Octo- 
ber 7, 1863. Died June 10, 1866. 

Morgan, B. J. Son of J. M. and Julia. Born January 15, 1866. 
Died June 22, 1880. 

Muse, . . . eth S. Died 1819. His broken marker lies in the section 
north of Colonial Avenue. First part of Christian name is broken off 
and lost. 

Parr, Mrs. Adeline Casey. Married Thomas Parr August 3, 1859. 
Mrs. Harold S. Overman, a great neice, states that Adeline was younger 
than the sister, Mrs. Virginia Casey Bland listed above, but dates of 

133 



birth and death are not known. Relatives say that she was buried in the 
section north of Colonial Avenue but the grave is lost. In all probability 
she was buried south of her sister, Mrs. Bland, and was moved in 1926 
(See Bland notes), or she might be one of the unidentified bodies that 
Mr. Markham referred to in tlie alley or driveway between his lot and 
the Colonial Avenue section of the cemetery. 

Rhodes, Henry and Lydia. Husband and wife. Death dates are 
unknown, but they were moved to another cemetery in 1912 to make 
room for the present pastor's home. Permission for removal was given 
by Mrs. G. M. Hughes, Sr., a granddaughter. 

Rhodes, Capt. Henry W. His marker in the section north of 
Colonial Avenue reveals tliat he died August 5, 1872. 

Shepherd, Ellen Wirt. Daughter of Frederick B. and Susan 
Shepherd. Believed to be in the Martin family and moved in 1926 to open 
Colonial Avenue (See notes on Martin family). 

Smith, Sarah Ann. Daughter of Robert H. and Elizabeth Smith. 
Died October 4, 1812, age 3 years. Marker moved from site of old par- 
sonage and lies next to the west annex. Sexton, Zack White, can give 
the approximate location of the grave. 

Sutton, Asbury. Died October 30, 1822, age 30 years. Marker 
bears a Masonic emblem and is located in the section north of Colonial 
Avenue. 

Sutton, Mrs. Mary. Relict of Benjamin Sutton. Died February 
21, 1834. Age 15 years, 5 months, and 9 days. 

Sutton, Benjamin. Mr. Howard Stevens states that he has seen 
Mr. Sutton's marker on the north side of Mrs. Sutton's, but it is now lost. 

Swift, Thatcher. Died August 12, 1821, age 19 years. Native of 
Barnstable, Mass. His grave and marker is near Mrs. Elizabeth Thatcher 
Fearing and believed to be a relative. (See notes on Mrs. Fearing, above). 

Thomas, Mrs. Mary E. (Mamie) Bland. Born January 27, 1861. 
Died February 22, 1889. See Bland notes. 

134 



Weatherly, W. H., Sr., Esquire. Died April 7, 1872. Son of Elder 
H. T. Weatherly who was pastor from April 24, 1858 to March 25, 1859. 
As stated above in the Hunter notes, the Weatherlys listed here rest 
underneath the Educational Building. 

Weatherly, Mrs. Virginia (Jennie) Hunter. Died January 15, 1896. 
Wife of W. H. Weatherly, Sr. Her funeral notice: 

The Funeral Services of the Late 

Mrs. Virginia A. Weatherly 

Will Take Place From The 

Baptist Church 

Wednesday Afternoon 3 O'clock 

January 15, 1896 

Friends of the Deceased and Family 

Are Respectfully Invited 

To Attend 

A newspaper account states "The Church is deprived of one of 
its warmest friends." 
The following are children of Mr. and Mrs. Weatherly: 

Weatherly, William Hunter. Died November 25, 1861, age 8 days. 

Weatherly, Timothy Hunter. Bom March 7, 1872. Died March 
26, 1875. 

Weatherly, Annie Cai-mott. Born July 22, 1866. Died July 22, 
1867. 

Weatherly, Caroline (Carrie) Hunter. Born March 19, 1869. Died 
March 22, 1871. 

White, Captain Albert. The Weatherly family record shows Capt. 
White's connection thereto as follows: "Capt. White came to Elizabeth 
City as a young Boston shipmaster with a trim three mast schooner and 
docked at Capt. Timothy Hunter's shipyard. Capt. Hunter invited him 
to his home. That evening he met Capt. Hunter's neice, Miss Amelia J. 
Jackson. A friendship developed into romance and soon they were 
married. 

White, Mrs. Amelia Jackson. Mr. Tom Overman remembers at- 
tending her funeral because she was the mother of his schoolteacher, 

135 



Mrs. Vetie Morgan, and tliat when the present sanctuary was erected 
Mrs. Morgan did not want her parents moved and consented to its 
erection over their graves. He remembers that their graves are beneath 
the north end of the building. Dates not known. 

Whitehurst, Vivian Aubrey. Died 1885, age 5 years. 

Whitehurst, George, Jr. Died in 1886, age 3 years. These child- 
ren were brothers of our Miss Mattie Whitehurst who states that their 
graves were moved to Old Hollywood in 1926 in order for the City to 
open Colonial Avenue. They were moved by the family and were not 
included in the 24 unidentified bodies referred to by Mrs. Seyfert, above. 

Wyatt, John. Apparently a Union soldier from the design and in- 
scription on the marker in the section north of Colonial Avenue. It bears 
no date but only: John Wyatt, Company 1, 101st Pennsylvania Infantry. 

After it was decided to assign no further lots in the cemetery 
probably just to prior to 1884, (There were burials after this date in lots 
already assigned) the Church apparently desired to acquire some space 
elsewhere that it could use in cases of need or emergency, because on 
September 27, 1884 Mr. R. F. Overman offered to give the Church two 
lots in Old Hollywood Cemetery. On October 25, 1884 a committee was 
appointed consisting of E. F. Aydlett and T. R. Rland to see Mr. Over- 
man about the two lots and report at the next conference. On December 
27, 1884 the Church minutes show tliat Aydlett and F. F. Cohoon were 
appointed to accept the two lots for the Church and express our appre- 
ciation to Mr. Overman for them. However, we have not been able to 
find any further record of the lots or whether or not, if acquired, there 
were ever any interments made there. 

Then during the period 1908 and 1912 when Rev. W. R. Haight 
was a member of our Church, Pastor at Rerea, and preached at our mis- 
sion on Parsonage Street, he lost his son, Charles Parrish Haight, who was 
born November 18, 1906 and died July 3, 1908. The Hollywood Ceme- 
tery Society gave the Church one half a lot adjoining that of Mr. Fred 
Ziegler's in which to bury the child. Since then those owning the lot on 
the other side inadvertantly put a grave partly on the one half lot owned 

136 



by the Church and witliin the last few years offered to buy all of the 
Church's space provided the Church would move the child. Mr. R. L. 
Garrett obtained permission from the relatives in Richmond, Virginia, 
Mr. Geo. A. Twiddy gave permission for the child to be moved to his 
lot, and the space was sold. 

In addition to the above list, all that we have been able to identify 
or partially identify, there are some known graves which are unmarked 
and unidentified: 

Mr. Fred Markham states that Mr. Walter Price from whom he 
purchased the house and lot, northwest corner of Colonial Avenue and 
Dyer Street, told him there were two unidentified graves in the drive- 
way or alley between the small tenant house to the rear and the section 
of the cemetery north of Colonial Avenue. 

Mr. S. J. Twine infonns us that there is an undetermined number 
of unidentified graves underneath tlie brick garage to the west of the 
Educational Building. These would be on the sLx feet of our lot sold in 
1902 to I. M. Meekins. 

Two unidentified graves are visible in the Churchyard: One 
cemented grave under the south eves of the Educational Building and 
the other a bricked grave witli a chain around it where the old parson- 
age stood. 

Apparently there were several known but unidentified gra\es 
where the Educational Building now stands, because before construction 
began the Church gave notice in die Daily Advance in March, 1925 
which referred to "several graves of persons unknown to the Trustees." 
These were not the Weatherly-Hunter family listed above, the Trustees 
knew of them, and Mr. W. H. Weatherly, Jr. gave consent to build over 
them. 

Also, Mr. Markham says he remembers that when he moved to 
the corner of Colonial Avenue and Dyer Street there were several more 
markers in the remaining section north of Colonial Avenue than there 
are now, indicating that there are several lost graves in that section. 



137 



Mrs. G. R. Little who has been our neighbor to the east all of her 
life relates the story of one more lost grave. A young man came to her 
home taking subscriptions to a magazine when she was a little girl. Her 
mother had recently subscribed to the magazine and when she so in- 
formed the young man he said he did not know what to do - he had his 
mother back in Baltimore to support. She does not remember the young 
man's name, but he went to his hotel room down town and committed 
suicide by cutting his throat. The Baptist burial ground received the 
body for its last resting place; his grave was close to Dyer Street and 
the Little's back yard, because Mrs. Little remembers that for some time 
afterward she and her playmates would not play on the Dyer Street side 
of their yard after dark. 

The legal procedure pursued by the City in cutting through our 
cemetery and opening Colonial Avenue; and that pursued by the Church 
in erecting the Educational Building over certain graves should be a 
matter of historical interest to our readers. 

First, the opening of Colonial Avenue. The following is taken 
from Minute Book 8, Page 212 regular meeting of the Elizabeth City 
Board of Alderman, October 5, 1925 furnished us by Mr. H. Kennedy 
Houtz, City Auditor: 

North Carolina 
Pasquotank County. 

We, the undersigned jury heretofore appointed by tlie Board of Aldennen 
of the City of EHzabeth City for the purpose of assessing damages to property, con- 
demned for a street, beginning at Dyer Street at the western end of Matthews Street 
and running across the lands of W. N. Price and the First Baptist Church and the 
old graveyard belonging to the City of Elizabeth and across the lands of M. P. 
Hite and Frank W. Bell to the eastern end of Cherry Street, said street to be 50 
feet in width. 

On the 2nd day of October, 1925, we went upon said proposed street and 
property adjacent thereto and after viewing same and considering the benefits 
accruing thereto and the actual damage to said property owners make the following 
report with map attached, the said map is hereby made a part of our report. 

Beginning at Dyer Street at the southeast corner of W. N. Price's lot and 
running to a point IS feet north of the southeast corner of said Price's lot, thence 
continuing in a straight line across said graveyard, to the lot of M. P. Hite, 2 feet 
north of the southeast corner of said lot, thence continuing said line to Harney 

138 



Street at a point 17 feet north of the southwest corner of said Hite lot. Thence 
beginning at Dyer Street at a point 14 feet south of the northeast corner of the 
lot belonging to the First Baptist Church and running in a straight line to the north- 
west corner of said lot, all of said lines and corners are shown on above mentioned 
and hereto annexed map. 

We assess damages as follows: 

W. N. Price $550.00 he to remove all buildings and obstructions. 

M. P. Hite, $100.00 he to remove all obstructions. 

First Baptist Church $230.00 they to remove all obstructions. 

S. G. Scott, L. B. Twiford, J. C. Perry, N. A. Jones, F. K. Kramer 
Condemnation Jury. 

The report was adopted and on February 22, 1926 the following 
ordinance was ratified, effective as of that date and is recorded in Min- 
ute Book 8, Page 230, also furnished us by Auditor Houtz: 

Whereas the old Cemetery lying north of and back of First Baptist Church has for 
many years ceased to be a place of interment and there has not been any burial in 
said Cemetery for over 20 years, and whereas for the best interest of the City of 
Elizabeth City, the said Cemetery shall be abandoned as a Cemetery and the graves 
therein consolidated or removed and whereas in order to connect Matthews Street 
in said City with Cherry Street, it will be necessary to cross said gra^•eyard. 

Now therefore be it ordained, that said City of Elizabeth either consolidate the graves 
in said Cemetery of the line and of the proposed Extension, or else remove same 
to some other public Cemetery, at its own expense, so as to facilitate the extension 
and opening of said Matthews Street across said graveyard. 

Be it further ordained that the City hereby authorize and direct the City Manager 
to lay out the boundaries of said Cemetery and make a plat of same and to lay out 
and continue the said Matthews Street from the west end of same across said grave- 
yard to the east side of Harney Street opposite the east end of Cherry Street. 

Be it further ordained that the said old graveyard be and the same is hereby aban- 
doned as a place of interment and property retained for the use and benefit of the 
City of Elizabeth City. 

Second, the procedure for erecting the Educational Building over 
certain graves was different from the condemnation procedure to open 
Colonial Avenue. The first step was a special act of the Legislature, copy 
of which is given below as furnished us by Honorable Thad Eure, Secre- 
tary of State: 

139 



Private Laws of North Carolina - 1925 
Chapter 120 

An act to authorize the trustees of the First 

Baptist Church of Ehzabeth City, North CaroHna, 

to erect a new church building covering a corner 

of an old graveyard 

Whereas, the First Baptist Church of Elizabeth City, North Carolina is 
contemplating the erection of a new church building on the site of the present build- 
ing, which site is so limited in space that a building adequate for and suitable to its 
congregation requires that a corner of the new building be placed on a corner of 
the old cemetery adjacent to the present building; and 

Whereas, said cemetery is not now used as a burying ground, no burials 
having been made therein within the past twenty years, and by reason of the time 
which has elapsed since the interments, the next of kin or relatives of most of the 
descendants cannot be located: Now, therefore, 

-THE GENERAL ASSEMBLY OF NORTH CAROLINA DO ENACT: 

Section 1. That tlie trustees of the First Baptist Church of Elizabeth City, 
North Carolina, be and they are hereby authorized and empowered to erect a church 
building upon the southern and eastern portions of the cemetery adjacent to the 
present building, and in so doing to place the foundation of said building upon and 
to cover, by the building erected thereon, all graves in said portions of the cemetery 
tliat may be there at the time of the erection of the new building; Provided, that 
said trustees shall give notice of their intention to so erect said building by posting 
a notice thereof at the courthouse door of Pasquotank County and at three (3) other 
public places therein, and by publishing said notice in a newspaper published in 
Pasquotank County once a week for four (4) consecutive weeks; and allow ten (10) 
days after the completion of said publication for the removal of graves by the 
relatives. 

Section 2. That all laws and clauses of laws in conflict herewith are hereby 
repealed to the extent of such conflict. 

Section 3. That this act shall be in force from and after its ratification. 

Ratified this the 6th day of March, A.D. 1925. 

The second step was the following notice appearing in the Daily 
Ad\ ance, local newspaper, for the specified number of times beginning 
the second week in March, 1925; and which is presumed to have been 
posted as otherwise provided for in the above act. The notice is of 
record in the Church minutes: 

Notice is hereby given of the intention of the First Baptist Church of Eliz- 
abeth City to erect a Sunday School building or an addition to the present building, 

140 



a part of which will extend over the area now occupied by several gra\e,s of per- 
sons unknown to Trustees of the First Baptist Church, and this notice is given in 
order that the relatives of any of these persons may remove the graves if they so 
desire. It is the intention of the Church that none of these graves shall be desecrated 
if they are not removed, but on the contrary every precaution will be taken simply 
to build over them without in any way disturbing them. 

Anyone desiring to remove any of the graves in question may do so any 
time prior to May 10, 1925. 

This notice is given pursuant to authority and direction of an act of the 
Legislature recently in session. 

It has been thought recently by some that the present section of 
the cemetery north of Colonial Avenue was owned by the City but the 
City Manager, Mr. Talmadge Hyman, who has been here many years, 
states tliat the City lays no claim to it whatsoever. Our original deed 
for the southern part of that lot calls for only 208 feet from Main Street 
which would not extend far enough north to include that section of the 
cemetery. But how and when the Church came in possession of that 
section we have not learned in tliis study. 

This study has enabled us to identify only 55 persons who were 
buried here (A few only partially identified). Of these some have been 
moved to other cemeteries, some are known to be underneath the sanct- 
uary and educational building, some are in the Churchyard and the 
rest are in the section north of Colonial Avenue. 

There were many more buried here but the number and names 
are now known only to God. Mrs. George F. Seyfert, one of the few re- 
maining members of the old Hollywood Cemetery Society remembers 
that when Colonial Avenue was opened the bones of 24 of these were 
placed in separate boxes made just long enough to contain the longest 
bone in the human body (Because no bones were connected) and moved 
to a consolidated or common grave in section 8, lot 64 given to the Cit\' 
by the Society for all those being moved in order to open the Avenue. At 
the same time relatives of the Martin family were present and assisted 
in moving their relatives and markers to the same lot. There are two 
bricked graves in the lot that are unmarked and unidentified. It is \'ery 
probable that these two constitute the consolidation of the bones of the 
24 unknown persons referred to by Mrs. Seyfert 

141 



The earliest known burial here is that of George Littleton Good- 
man in September, 1810, in the section north of Colonial Avenue. The 
latest one is that of Mrs. Virginia (Jennie) Weatherly on January 15, 1896 
who rests beneath the educational building. 



142 



CHAPTER XVII 

Methods of Financing 

The earliest record we have of the Church's conception of needs 
and methods of meeting them is in a lengthy set of Rules of Decorum 
adopted March 27, 1857. Article 12. Every member shall bestow annually 
according to their ability for the support of our pastor and the necessary 
expenses of the Church. And failure to comply with this Christian obli- 
gation, shall subject him to Church censure; as in any other case of un- 
christian conduct. Article 13. It shall be the duty of the Deacons, the 
Treasurer and the Clerk to hold a meeting every quarter and make out 
a fiscal state of the Church, and report the same at the ensuing confer- 
ence meeting, at which time they shall adopt such measures as may be 
agreed upon to meet the fiscal demands of the Church, so that they shall 
be properly met. 

After over a hundred years we would say: "Not so bad." The only 
difference between then and now is that they called the needs "a fiscal 
state of the Church," while we call it a "budget." And, they made up 
the fiscal state of the Church quarterly, while we make up the budget 
annually. How well they carried out the above rules of decorum we will 
not attempt to say because it is hard for us to realize the circumstances 
under which they struggled to get financial support for the Church, but 
we certainly cannot presume to be much wiser than they in outlining 
a plan. However, some of the quotations from minutes, given below 
in chronological order show a great deal of wisdom, while some are to 
say the least, amusing after the passing of so many years. 

June 26, 1858 "The Church agrees that each Brother shall give 
into the Church the value of his property, and a percentage should be 
laid on the dollar sufficient to meet tlie Church expenses." 

April 28, 1859 "On motion the Clerk was ordered to write to 
Brother . . . and request him to remit his subscription to the Church." 

September 25, 1862 "R. R. Overby was called again (He was pas- 
tor the previous year, and this was the annual call which many churches 

143 



made in those days). He postponed answering the call until he could 
know whether a sufficient amount could be raised for his support." He 
was paid $119.50 on salary on October 3, 1863 and on November 15 he 
"agreed to serve again for six hundred pounds of flour and eight hundred 
pounds of pork and bacon for serving two Sundays each month." In 
1864 he was called again and was to receive "for the ensuing year eight 
hundred pounds of bacon and one thousand pounds of flour." Novem- 
ber 6, 1864 "On motion deacons were authorized to tax each member 
for the support of tlie pastor as the Lord has blessed them," but this 
motion was rescinded the following December 4 and on June 6, 1865 
"The Church didn't furnish tlie required pounds of meat in time for the 
pastor." Therefore, on August 5 "Resolved to raise and bank for him 
$300.00." Even then, after he had resigned and another pastor, N. B. 
Cobb had come, at the April 1, 1867 conference a letter from him asking 
for salary still due him was read and as late as February 21, 1873 "A 
committee named to settle financial problems between Mr. Overby and 
the Church." 

January 5, 1867. N. B. Cobb also had difficulty in getting support 
and on this date was "allowed to use his own discretion in preaching 
at other churches in order to raise his support." At the July 4, 1868 con- 
ference the Church considered itself in such a deplorable state both fi- 
nancial!}' and spiritually that it was "Resolved that the next day be a 
special da\' of prayer that God will help us and revive us." 

On May 27, 1869 "R. R. Overby was recalled to the pastorate (His 
second) "the Church agreeing to do all it could by way of remuneration, 
and at tiie quarterly conference on October 6 it was ordered that the 
members be assessed an amount to pay. The following January 20, 1870 
the names and amounts each member had been assessed were read. 
There had been some confusion caused by some members handing the 
pastor money which was never credited on the books, he possibly think- 
ing they were special gifts. This was taken care of at this January 20 
conference. "It was then decided that whenever a member paid any 
money to the pastor, he was to get a receipt and turn over to the Treas- 



144 



urer, or it would be considered a gift rather than be credited to his as- 
sessment." 

First reference to a Finance Committee was in August, 1865, but 
the names of the committee members were not listed. The first recom- 
mendation of record by this committee was on December 2, 1865: 

"Financial Committee recommends as follows and on motion it 
was adopted: Let each assessable male member be charged with 25c 
monthly dues and each assessable female member who is not the wife of 
a member of tliis Church be charged with 10c monthly dues - subtract 
this sum from the annual amount fixed as the annual expenses of this 
Church, then charge an additional amount to each male and female 
member, as tlieir ability will justify sufficient only to cover the amount 
necessary." 

No amount is mentioned as being needed for the year but it cer- 
tainly appears that the committee had in mind what we in this day and 
time call a budget. The "financial" committee is mentioned a number 
of times in the succeeding years and it is evident the Church has had 
the benefit of such a committee from time to time. The first committee 
whose members are listed was not until February 15, 1891 "New Finan- 
cial Committee, Mrs. T. S. White, Mrs. Sam Williams, Mrs. M. S. Heath, 
Mrs. Vetie Morgan, Mrs. Laura Madrin, Mrs. J. F. Snell, W. K. Carter 
and Newton Jones." Certainly in recent years this has been a most val- 
uable committee and tlie responsibility of property has been added, 
making it the Finance and Property Committee. It is presently composed 
of J. H. LeRoy, Jr., Chairman, J. C. Abbott, Paul Bradshaw, Mrs. I. T. 
Blanchard, Mrs. W. K. Carter, Mayor Levin Culpepper, Delbert D. Dud- 
ley, Mrs. S. G. Etheridge, R. L. Garrett, Dr. W. A. Hoggard, Mrs. C. D. 
Johnston, Mrs L. S. Jones, J. H. Moore, Mrs. Herman Sawyer, Mrs. E. A. 
Swain and Dewey Wells. 

Clerk of Accounts, presumed to be what we in more recent years 
ha\e called Financial Secretary. First reference in the minutes was on 
December 2, 1865 when James Cartwright was elected. His duties were 
to keep the record of assessments and/or pledges of individual members. 



143 



credit them properly when payments were made, receive all funds and 
turn over to the Treasurer. This office was not maintained for long be- 
cause there is no further reference to it until June 1, 1915 when J. Kenyon 
Bailey was elected. He doubtless served until the end of 1921 because 
Miss Inez Reid was elected on December 4 and probably took office 
January 1, 1922 and on November 25, 1923 the office was combined with 
that of Treasurer and Miss Inez was elected Treasurer. The Treasurer 
performed the above duties until 1950 when Miss Genevieve Royal was 
employed full time Secretary and Educational Director and as Church 
Secretary (Clerk) performed the duties. After she left Mrs. E. F. Aydlett, 
Sr., was employed for part time as Secretary (Clerk) who took over the 
duties. Mrs. Aydlett resigned April 8, 1956 and was succeeded by Mrs. 
W. B. Riddick who still serves. 

Now, we back-track to July 6, 1867 and the pastorate of N. B. 
Cobb. "Our pastor has received on his salary from August 1, 1866 to 
July 1, 1867 in cash and provisions $358.83. This amount has been con- 
tributed by only a small portion of the Church, there being on our 
Church books the names of 27 male and 183 female who have paid not 
one dime." January 24, 1869 "Committee to solicit funds for Brother 
Cobb: William Etheridge, W. T. Whitehurst and Rufas Scott. February 
28, 1869 "Committee reported having done nothing. Brotlier Cobb re- 
signed the pastoral charge of the Church. On motion it was accepted." 

January 20, 1870 "Resolved tliat we post a missionary and poor 
box in the Church for tlie deposit of any amount that any brother or 
sister may see proper to deposit therein . . ." (This generation should not 
complain about that - not many years ago we had ushers posted at each 
exit after communion services to receive freewill offerings for the poor). 
At this conference a collection was taken "for the purpose of purchasing 
bread and wine." 

April 24, 1871 "Committee of five (What became of the Financial 
Committee?) appointed to arrange a financial system . . . and consider 
a full and complete reassessment of members, male and female. 

September 20, 1873 "That each delinquent for 1872 appear at the 

146 



October conference and pay or show cause why tliey cannot pay their 
1872 assessment." 

June 27, 1874 "Resolved tliat every member be requested to con- 
tribute something monthly to each of the different objects of benevolence 
recommended by the Baptist State Convention." A committee was ap- 
pointed on this matter but the names of the committee are not listed 
nor is there a report on their work. 

December 24, 1874 "Voted to continue the present assessment for 
1875 with such alterations as may be found necessary by prosperity or 
adversity, and that all delinquents be dealt with." 

January 23, 1875 "That tlie Church adopt the rule, that each mem- 
ber . . . shall subscribe the sum of not more than five cents nor less than 
two cents per week for contingent expenses." Pittance? Yes, but it should 
be noted that this was an amount over and above the assessments in ef- 
fect for the year. 

On December 22, 1879 a gospel tableau was presented and the 
net proceeds of $12.45 were on December 27 tendered the pastor, M. C. 
Duke, on salary for that year. 

March 3, 1882. By tliis time there was apparently considerable 
resentment to the assessment plan of raising money - that individuals, 
like Baptist churches, should be left to decide for themselves what they 
could or were willing to pay, and to what causes. Therefore, the first 
efforts resembling the more recent every-member canvass were under- 
taken by the deacons: Thos. R. Bland, Charles Harris, F. F. Cohoon, E. F. 
Pritchard, David Love and P. S. C. Davis, who later was ordained to the 
ministry. They divided the membership between themselves and can- 
vassed each one "to see what members would give." 

On holding feasts, etc. The following resolutions introduced by 
C. R. Jones and adopted on December 26, 1883 is self-explanatory: 

Whereas it has been the custom of some of the members of this Church to 
engage in holding feasts for the purpose of raising money for the benefit of said 
Church and whereas the money so raised in some instances having been unjudicious- 
ly spent for which this Church has received no benefit, therefore, be it resolved: 

147 



1st. That no member or set of members of this Church is authorized nor 
shall be allowed to hold a feast or concert or entertaimiient of any kind for the pur- 
pose of raising money for benefit of this Church without first obtaining permission 
by a majority of votes in regular conference. 

2nd. That all feasts or entertainments held for the purpose of raising money 
for benefit of this Church shall be conducted by a committee appointed by a regular 
conference. 

3rd. That all money raised hereafter for the benefit of this Church shall be 
placed in the hands of the Treasurer and he shall hold the same sacred for the pur- 
pose for which it is raised. 

4th. That the foregoing resolutions be annexed to and made a part of the 
rules of this Church. 

Use of envelopes was initiated on December 22, 1888 while Dr. 
J. L. White was pastor. At the conference on this date "On motion we 
adopt weekly giving for pastor's salary and a committee of ten appoint- 
ed to see all members of Church and solicit money for pastor's salary. 
W. T. Love, Sr., was asked to secure envelopes for the members to use 
weekly for pastor's salary." The names of the ten every-member can- 
vassers are not listed. As far as we know we have been using the envel- 
opes for weekly giving ever since. 

At the December 31, 1889 conference there was a report "of bene- 
fits given on December 6 and 7 also of a cantata given at tlie opera house 
on December 26." 

Although the assessment plan apparently had been abandoned 
for a pledge system, members who pledged and did not pay were dealt 
with. On January 25, 1890 ". . . expelled because he refused to pay his 
pledge to the Church." February 8, 1899 ... a teacher in the public 
schools and later taught in one of the great universities of this country 
"to be notified of his delinquency in dues amounting to $6.50. If fails 
without reasonable excuse, will be dealt with." 

August 21, 1892 "Committee named to make arrangements for a 
lecture by Rev. Thomas Dixon, to be given Thursday night, September 
1." It was announced on September 5, that Dixon was paid $50.00 and 
the Church cleared $94.40. 



148 



March 18, 1894 "Those who have not paid pledges to pastor's 
salary by next conference or render satisfactory excuse their names and 
amounts they owe be read out to the Church for action." 

On June 6, 1897 there was a boat excursion to Nags Head. Salem, 
Sawyer's Creek and Corinth churches were invited. One half of the 
profit realized from the fares charged was to be paid on the organ debt. 

December 30, 1900 "J. D. Sykes directed to have added on the 
slips (Sunday bulletin) tliat everyone who attends this Church was sup- 
posed to contribute towards its expenses." 

December 6, 1903 "Treasurer ordered to send statements to each 
member whether pledged or not." 

The first budget of record and called a budget submitted to the 
Church was by tlie deacons on December 30, 1906 "Endeavor to raise a 
budget of $5000.00 for all purposes in 1907." The minutes do not con- 
tain that budget item by item. 

January 6, 1915 "The deacons recommended the following finan- 
cial plan: Contributions for Church expenses including pastor's salary, 
janitor, lights, fuel, etc. to be paid weekly through the Church envelopes. 

"A financial statement will be given each member at the close 
of each quarter." 

"Contributions to beneficent objects to be paid at the periods 
stated and through the representatives as follows: home missions, time - 
January, and February, representative. Dr. S. W. Gregory; Foreign Mis- 
sions, time - March and April, representative, W. T. Love, Sr.; Ministers 
Relief, time - May and June, representative, J. J. White; Christian Ed- 
ucation, time - July, August and September, representative, P. C. Cohoon; 
State Missions, October and November, representative, J. L. Pritchard; 
Orphanage, Sunday School collections on the first Sunday in each month. 
Adopted." Just when the first Sunday collections began for the orphan- 
age we do not know but this is the first reference to it in the minutes. 



149 



April 7, 1909 "J- H. LeRoy loaned the steamer, Virginia, for an 
excursion and the Missionary Societies netted $83.11 for the Swanquarter 
work." 

The Sunday bulletin of September 23, 1928 announced that "Mrs. 
Dan Morgan and Mrs. Harold Overman will on September 28 present 
in the annex of the First Baptist Church at 8 o'clock P.M. a play 'A Man- 
less Wedding from Kinny Keet' for the benefit of The First Baptist and 
Christ Churches." 

By this time tlie ruling of December 26, 1883 concerning permis- 
sion to hold feasts and entertainments had probably been forgotten and 
the Ladies Aid Society was still a going concern in raising money by 
feasts, sales, etc. in addition to that which came in through the weekly 
envelopes. Then came Dr. E. H. Potts as pastor in December, 1933 and 
in three years convinced us that it was best to raise money for the Lord's 
work by giving directly to the budget rather than by entertainment, 
feasts, etc. The annual every member canvass was made for a few years 
but when the membership got tlie good habit of generous giving through 
the envelopes and to the unified budget it was discontinued; and to my 
knowledge there has not been an every-member canvass in 15 or 20 years. 

Weekly envelopes are made available to the membership and there 
is no difficulty in meeting the budget. Special offerings are seldom taken. 
If there are building programs or unexpected, heavy repair bills the peo- 
ple give as the Lord leads them and the bills are paid. 



150 



CHAPTER XVIII 

Sunday School 

Origin of the Sunday School movement is generally credited to 
Robert Raikes of Glocester, England, Editor and Proprietor of the Glo- 
cester Journal. His first Sunday School class was in July, 1780. The class 
was for underprivileged boys and girls, but soon broadened in scope to 
include persons of all ages and classes. His idea soon spread to America 
and when our State and Southern Baptist Conventions came into being 
in 1830 and 1845, respectively, they forthwith set up programs for the 
encouragement and furtherance of the cause. Sunday School literature 
soon began running through the presses and today hardly a Baptist 
Church can be found that does not have a Sunday School. 

Just when the first Sunday School was organized in this Church 
we will perhaps never know. The first record found is in the 1831 Asso- 
ciational minutes. The Clerk in his digest of letters stated that "The 
Church at Elizabeth City have a flourishing Sunday School." The tone 
of this terse statement certainly indicates that the Sunday School was not 
in its infancy at that time. 

The Associational minutes make no further reference to Sunday 
Schools in the Association until 1848, not that there were none - the 
minutes simply did not mention them. Certainly, some of the churches 
including this one, had Sunday Schools during that period of time. In 
1848 the Church reported the Sunday School to the Association as having 
125 enrolled and 18 teachers. Unfortimately, it did not give the name of 
the Superintendent. The next year enrollment had increased from 125 
to 200 and teachers from 18 to 41, but still tlie name of the Superin- 
tendent was not given. 

Then the Association omits Sunday School information in its min- 
utes until 1856 and reports Superintendents for the first time. This year 
our Superintendent was J. M. Morgan, but no statistics are given. Here, 
our minutes begin but do not reveal names of Sunday School Superin- 
tendents; neither do Associational minutes give this information again 



151 



until 1868 when for the first time the minutes list the Sunday Schools 
and their respective Superintendents. Our Superintendent that year was 
C. W. Kellenger and he was reported again in 1869. From this time for- 
ward we can, with the help of Church and Associational minutes, give 
a fairly accurate succession of Superintendents: 

1870-71— W. H. Weatherly. 

1872 — Quinton Trotman Simpson, O. C. Horton and Henry Wood, 
all of whom were subsequently ordained to the Gospel ministry, al- 
though we cannot be absolutely sure about Henry Wood. 

1873— O. C. Horton and Henry Wood. 

1874 — John S. Waugh and Henry Wood. 

1875-1878— John S. Waugh. 

1879— C. R. Jones. 

1880— F. F. Cohoon. 

1881— C. R. Jones. 

1882-1884— S. Modlin. 

1885 — William Swain. 

1886-1888— F. F. Cohoon and W. K. Carter. 

1889— W. T. Love, Sr. and E. Harris. 

1890— W. T. Love, Sr. 

1891— George W. Rrothers. 

1892-1907— E. F. Aydlett, Sr. 

1908-1911— J. R. Pinner 

1912-1915— Dr. S. W. Gregory (Dentist). 

1916— W. T. Love, Sr. and I. M. Meekins. 

1917-1919— W. T. Love, Sr. 

1920— A. J. Scott. 

1921— S. G. Scott, Sr. 

1922-1925— Calvin S. Twiddy. 

1926-1930— M. P. Jennings. 

1931-1933— R. L. Garrett. 

1934-1935— Robert L. Griffin. 

1936-1938— R. L. Garrett. 

1939_j. L. Lamb, Sr. 

152 



1940— R. L. Garrett. 

1941— G. A. Twiddy. 

1942-1943— P. H. Jameson. 

1944-1947— Selby Scott. 

1948-1950— J. H. iMoore 

1951-1952 — Miss Jennie Lou Newbold, in her capacity as Educa- 
tional Secretary of the Church, and the first Woman Superintendent. 

1953-1954— W. W. Garrett. 

1955 — Miss Kathleen Jackson. To date the Sunday School has had 
only two women as Superintendents and Miss Jackson was the second. 

1956-1957— Willard Savin. 

1958 — Delbert D. Dudley who still serves. 

In the early days of the Sunday School movement and even as 
late as when this writer was a child and can remember, many schools 
closed during the winter months, because of bad roads, poor heating 
facilities, etc. Those which were kept open the year 'round were some- 
times called evergreen Sunday Schools. Some early Associational min- 
utes reported the number of months in tlie year each Sunday School was 
kept open. As far as could be found this School was kept open the whole 
year from the beginning. At least no report was found to die contrary. 

It is reasonable to believe that from the beginning at least some 
efforts were put forth by the leaders to enlist as many as possible in the 
Sunday School, but the first record of anything like what we today 
might call an enlargement campaign is on March 4, 1894, when "William 
Keats and others (Other's names not listed) were appointed to see the 
young people of the Church who are not members of the Sunday School 
and try to enlist them." 

The first attempt at departmentalizing the Sunday School was in 
1919-1922 during the pastorate of H. K. Williams. Miss Kate Wood, now 
Mrs. E. F. Aydlett, Sr., and the minister's wife organized the Junior De- 
partment. There was strong opposition on the part of a few on the 
grounds that the ladies were destroying the spirit of the Sunday School 
hour by removing the children from nine to twelve years of age from 



153 



the opening and closing exercises. "It," they said, "would make things 
seem dead to take them away." Miss Wood was the Department's first 
Superintendent and remained in that office until May, 1925 when she 
married Mr. E. F. Aydlett, Sr., a member of Blackwell Memorial Church, 
and resigned to take membership with him. Today, the Sunday School 
is fully departmentalized, including Adult Department, Young Adult I 
and Young Adult II, Young People, Intermediate, Juniors, Beginner I 
and Beginner II, Nursery I and Nursery II, Cradle Roll and Extension 
Departments. 

What we now call Sunday School Study Courses were first call- 
ed Normal Courses and tlie first reported was in the fall of 1922, during 
the pastorate of Dr. Samuel H. Templeman. Mrs. Aydlett in her notes, 
says that "many times Dr. Templeman was the teacher, and boy was he 
a good one!" Mrs. W. D. Shepherd, tlien 60 years of age led the Sunday 
School in winning the first Red Seal, a Southern Baptist Sunday School 
Board award for Normal Course achievement. Since then many courses 
have been held and countless numbers have taken advantage of them 
to go forward in enlistment, teaching, administrative and other functions 
of the Church and Sunday School. 

However, as much as the writer hates to do it, this chapter must 
close with two sour notes: (1) Since the Sunday School Board of the 
Southern Baptist Convention suggested certain minimum points to be 
achieved in order to be what it considered a Standard A-1 Sunday School 
we have achieved them only a few times. The first year was 1922 as 
shov/n by the Associational minutes. Then in 1924 (This is from a state- 
ment made by the Superintendent, Calvin H. Twiddy, in his report to 
the Church on January 6, 1924) "the Sunday School is in a position to 
enter the Standard A-1 achievement tests as outlined by the Sunday 
School Board." No further Church records have been found on the sub- 
ject. The Associational minutes for the years 1932 and 1933 report that 
the Sunday School was standard. Then they report "No" for several years 
and then the Sunday School Board discontinued asking the churches for 
that information in the Uniform Church Letter. If the Sunday School 
has been Standard A-1 since 1933 we have not been able to learn of it. 

154 



(2) We have the space and facihties in the west annex and the education- 
al building to accommodate perhaps twice as many as we are having to 
attend, or have ever had since the educational building was completed 
for that matter. Our present enrollment is 734 and average attendance 
alarmingly low at only 369. 

It may be out of place in a book of history for the author to make 
a plea, but in this case he has tlie urge to say: May we soon arouse our- 
selves to an acute awareness of tliese two serious weaknesses in our 
Sunday School program and accept God's challenge to move ahead in 
this important phase of His kingdom's work. 

The following pictures were furnished by Mr. J. L. Lamb, Sr.: First, 
the Young People's Department in 1928. R. L. Garrett standing in front 
of the down drain of the Educational Building was Department Superin- 
tendent. The Pastor, Rev. Gerald H. Payne is tlie middle man standing 
in front of the door. Second, is of the Adult Department's Baracca Class 
in 1925. Mr. Lamb was Secretary and says the enrollment was 123. J. B. 
Alderman was teacher. Third is of the entire Sunday School on April 1, 
1935, furnished by Mr. Lamb is shown here. He was General Secretary 
and states that the attendance was 505. Brother Lamb and his wife at 
his left are in the door of tlie Educational Building. R. L. Garrett was 
General Superintendent and may be seen at the reader's far right. Dr. 
Potts, Pastor, is the fourth person to Garrett's right. 



155 



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CHAPTER XIX 

Revivals 

Doubtless there have been outstanding revivals here that no rec- 
ord was made of, except in the Celestial Kingdom, and we may not have 
listed all we do have record of that some of our readers feel should have 
been listed. However, the record of a few before I was a member of this 
Church impressed me. We have also had some within my memory which 
are indeed worthy of mention. 

The first revival of which we have any record touching the spirit- 
ual life of this Church, was perhaps the greatest and most widespread 
of any in the history of Southeastern United States. As far as our church 
is concerned it was a small part of what is referred to by historians as the 
Great Revival; and, although the nature and effect of it was a tremendous 
departure from Baptist customs and belief of that time, it had its impact 
on the beginning of the great Southern Baptist denomination. 

This revival was kindled in the Elkhorn Association of Kentucky, 
and a foremost leader in it was the zealous preacher and reformer, Elder 
Da\ id Barrow, who had only a year or so previously gone there from the 
Mill Swamp Church, Isle of Wight County, Virginia, and a member of 
tlie Kehukee Association. That was before the Virginia churches with- 
drew from the Kehukee Association to form tlie Portsmoutli Association. 
Barrow was closely associated witli Elder Lemuel Burkitt, a former 
member of our mother Church, and who was also a reformer and had 
evangelized in this vicinity. He reported that at tlie Elkhorn Association 
in August, 1789 "it seemed as if every harp was untuned and hung on a 
willow tree, but at tlie next session it was entirely different. It was at- 
tended with much seriousness, was lively and refreshing. In some cases 
when the delegates left for their homes tliey left as many as a dozen 
persons in the houses where they had lodged bathed in tears." 

The revival soon spread to all the region south of the Kentucky 
River into Mississippi and to the Atlantic seaboard, according to Rip- 
pon's Register. Methodists and even Presbyterians caught tlie spirit of it. 



159 



Lemuel Burkitt, then pastor at Sandy Creek, Bertie County, hear- 
ing the good news of the revival in Kentucky through his friend, David 
Barrow, went to visit him, experience and take part in the Great Revival. 
According to a sketch in the Sandy Run Church book, "his soul caught 
the seraphic flame. He preached almost day and night for several weeks 
. . . with great acceptance, then returned home fired with an ardent 
zeal surpassing any that his friends had seen before." Returning home in 
time for the Kehukee Association in May, 1801 at Great Swamp in Pitt 
County he proclaimed from the stage that in eight months about 6000 
had been converted and baptized in Kentucky. According to his own 
report, the people heard the good news with great emotion, and many 
began to cry out for mercy and many others fell to praising and glorify- 
ing God. The Kehukee Association had never before experienced any- 
thing like it. Ministers and delegates carried the sacred flame home to 
tiieir churches. The fire began to kindle and the work increased. Burkitt's 
account, 1803, states that "the returns to the last two Associations showed 
1,500 added to the churches by baptism," nearly twice as many per year 
as we the daughter Association with 58 churches and 16,382 members 
received in 1959 and 1960. And Burkitt added: "blessed be God, the 
work seems yet progressing." 

It appears from Burkitt's History of the Kehukee Association in 
1803 that this Church was somewhat slow in catching the spirit of the 
Great Revival, but he stated "from their last account we hope a re^'i^'al 
is taking place in tlieir Church." His prediction was correct because five 
years later our membership had increased and a mission had begun up 
the river and was tliat year organized as tlie present Ramoth Gilead 
Church. 

The Great Revival continued for many years in some churches as 
was true in this one, but the Associational Clerk's digest of Church let- 
ters at the 1830 session of the Chowan states of this Church: "Tlie revival 
seems to have subsided and they say 'we have nothing pleasing to com- 
municate.' They ask the prayers of God's people." 

There seems to be no further record, Associational or elsewhere, 



160 



of revivals until our own Church minutes begin in 1857. In those days it 
was customary at monthly business conferences to "open the door for 
new converts." On Saturday, February 23, 1861, 44 came for baptism 
and three for restoration. Imagine it! At a business conference! 

The first account we have of a visiting minister to assist the pas- 
tor in revival services is recorded on June 3, 1865, during the first pastor- 
ate of Dr. R. R. Overby. It is noted that "Rrother J. E. Carter had been 
laboring with us and thanks to our Heavenly Father, a gracious revival 
has been the result." There is recorded a list of 57 persons who presented 
themselves at this conference for baptism and restoration. At one service, 
and a business conference at that. 

The January 22, 1876 minutes note that "Rev. F. M. Jordan who 
has been holding protracted meetings for two weeks presided. The door 
of the Church was opened as usual and 40 persons presented themselves 
for baptism and one for restoration." 

On May 24, 1884 the minutes give the names of 34 candidates 
for baptism and three by letter. This was the fifth month of George 
Baker's pastorate and there is no mention of a visiting evangelist. 

Dr. J. L. White was pastor in 1888. Many of us know that he was 
the father of J. L. White, Jr. who was pastor at Blackwell Memorial 
several years ago. When Dr. White returned to address the Church on 
the occasion of its Sesqui-Centennial celebration in 1936 he stated that 
"one of the most outstanding events of his short pastorate here was that 
he baptized 48 persons in Pasquotank River in 32 minutes." There is no 
reference to a visiting minister. 

Also, early in the pastorate of Claude Duke there are indications 
of great revivals and in gatherings without the services of a visiting evan- 
gelist: April 7, 1901, received 25 for baptism and six by letter; April 21, 
five for baptism and August 5, five from Riverside Mission for baptism. 
On October 13, 1901, 28 came for baptism and nine for restoration. Then 
on October 27 ten came by letter. Four years later, May 8 to May 21, 
1905 he was assisted by the venerable Josiah Elliott of Hertford and 
there were 17 for baptism, seven by letter and 11 by experience. 

161 



Revivals come only by convictions of a need of them and fervent 
prayer for them. These preceded the Great Revival described in the 
first part of this chapter, and all great revivals. The first reference in our 
Church minutes to cottage prayer meetings for a week preliminary to 
revival effort in the Church was in the conference of January 6, 1909. 
This practice was continued each year for many years. 

In April, 1907 we find a unique arrangement for revivals. Our pas- 
tor, Dr. J. F. Vines, "was granted time to assist Brother Bristoe in a re- 
vival at Park Avenue Church in Norfolk from April 8-15 and there 
were about 20 conversions." Then Brother Bristoe assisted Dr. Vines 
here from April 16 - 24. The minutes relate "The Church was greatly 
blessed by the presence and power of the Holy Spirit as manifested in the 
quickening of the spiritual life - conversions, 50 or more and as many 
by letter and restoration." 

The September 8, 1910 minutes report that Rev. George Johnson 
helped in a revival and many received. Mrs. Aydlett's notes reveal that 
among them was Miss Emerald Sykes, our present and long time organist. 

In 1911 Dr. J. T. Riddick helped in the revival and in the min- 
utes of November 5 we find: "resulting in greatly reviving the Church 
and the addition of 77 members." 

The last week in October, 1915 Dr. Virgil of Roanoke, Virginia, 
assisted which resulted in 75 or 80 being received in the Church and 
man\' others who rededicated themsehes to the work of Christ. 

It is worth\' to note that some time during the first decade of 1900 
while he was in his Norfolk campaign, the world famous evangelist Billy 
Sunday, came to Elizabeth City for one day time service. This was a city- 
wide effort and our Church co-operated by permitting the service to be 
held in our Sanctiiary. 

On April 29, 1923 Dr. Samuel H. Templeman baptized 35 persons 
- no record of a visiting evangelist. The next year, however. Dr. Temple- 
man was a leader in organizing a great City-wide evangelistic campaign 
and bringing Rev. M. F. Ham and his vocalist, Mr. Ramsey, to the City 



162 



for several weeks, commonly known as the Ham - Ramsey revival. Al- 
though it was a City-wide and interdenominational effort, Mr. Ham 
was a Baptist minister. A great tabernacle was erected on Parsonage 
street about where tlie Grammar School now stands. The attendance 
was large and it probably was the greatest City-wide spiritual awakening 
ever known here. It is remembered that Mr. W. O. Saunders, Editor of 
the weekly Independent, was antagonistic to tlie revival and challenged 
the trath and integrity of Mr. Ham in some of his statements during tlie 
campaign. But the Lord apparently brought good out of it in that His 
people redoubled their efforts in reaching people for Christ and the 
Church. God only knows how many renewed their allegiance to Him 
and how many were converted and united with the churches during and 
immediately following the Ham-Ramsey Revival. Our records show that 
during October and November we received 69 by baptism, restoration 
and letter, but that was not all. One person has said there must ha\e 
been a hundred or more at one service. 

The Daily Advance, local newspaper on November 22, 1924 feat- 
ured our Church and its Pastor, Dr. Templeman, for our zeal and success 
during the revival in a well illustrated article in the paper. The article 
states "The First Baptist Church, it is now indicated, will receive more 
members as a result of the Ham-Ramsey Re\ival than any other church 
in the City." 

Howe\'er, the First Methodist Church under the leadership of its 
great pastor. Dr. Wilson, was also greatly blessed as may be seen from 
the following excerpts taken from that newspaper article: "Be sure your 
sins will find you out was Mr. Ham's text on Friday night and he preach- 
ed his usual strong sermon. Wnen the response to the invitation at the 
close of the sermon slackened . . . the evangelist called Ira B. Parker, 
a recent convert (First Methodist), to tlie stand; and to the amazement 
of everyone present, Mr. Parker came forward with a telling message, 
following which throngs, witli many among them in tears, pressed for- 
ward toward the inquir>^ room. 

"Parker's appeal was too much for D. Walter Harris . . . (First 



163 



Baptist) and, accompanied by his wife he came forward, mounted the 
platform and after expressing regret for neglect of Christ in the past, 
declared himself as having made a decision to make the rest of his life 
count for Him. Mr. Harris' confession and testimony brought another 
throng forward . . . and there was an affecting scene. D. Walter Harris, 
Sr., who sat on the front seat overcome with emotion while his son spoke, 
mounted the platform to express in broken words his joy in the fact 
that both of his sons, through his own and their dead mother's prayers, 
had found salvation." The other son was Frank M. Harris (First Baptist), 
who told this writer recently tliat it was in this revival that he made a 
rededication and decided that he and his wife could do more for the 
Lord if they were in the same Church. He tlien engaged his rededicated 
life in the First Metliodist Church witli his wife. He is still there and one 
of the Lord's truly great fruit-bearing children. 

"Here is a man you all love, said Mr. Ham as Dr. Zene Fearing 
(First Methodist and dearly beloved physician) then came forward to 
take the platform, listen to him. And the congregation not only listened 
but wept as Dr. Fearing told of the Christian influences of his early life 
and made an appeal to all who knew him to line up with Christ and the 
Church. 

"The scene in the inquiry room after all this testimony can better 
be imagined than described." 

In this issue of the paper we find the following testimony from 
Mr. L. R. Foreman (First Metliodist): "I want to say that the coming 
of Mr. Ham and his helpers to our City has been a joy and a blessing 
to me personally. I can see all through the town where they ha\-e chang- 
ed selfishness to service; suspicion into faith; discouragement into hope 
and hatrid into love." 

Robert L. Griffin, who proved himself and served as deacon so 
well and so many years; and was one time Sunday School Superintendent 
in the First Baptist Church was, I am told, a product of the Ham-Ramsey 
revival. 



164 



Experiences like tlie above were duplicated many times during 
and following the revival. The writer, coming to Elizabeth City in the 
early part of 1925, was not privileged to be in the Ham-Ramsey revi\'al 
but if he is any judge, the First Baptist Church experienced another 
great revival in tlie fall of 1929 in which he did receive a great blessing. 
It was still during the pastorate of Dr. Templeman. Dr. Ellis Fuller, Pas- 
tor of the Atlanta, Georgia Fii'st Baptist Church and later President of 
the Southern Baptist Theological Seminary, Louisville, Kentucky, was 
the evangelist. The sanctuary was filled from the first service on Monday 
night. After a great sermon the first night he called for Church leaders, 
officers from the office of least significance, to that of the most important; 
and, of any denomination to come to the front for a prayer of rededica- 
tion. As I recall it, the response was so great and so spontaneous that 
Dr. Fuller and many others shed tears of joy and gladness. Each succeed- 
ing service abounded with the true spirit of revi\'al. Not a great many 
conversions but a genuine spiritual rededication was felt throughout the 
Church. 

Anotlier which I remember quite well was conducted by Dr. 
Arthur Fox of Morristown, Tennessee in 1937. A great number were re- 
ceived upon profession of faith and by letter. Perhaps tlie main reason 
this revival stands out so clearly in my mind is that my oldest daughter, 
Jean Frances, gave her young heart to the Lord. 

After tliis the Church co-operated with other churches in a num- 
ber of united efforts. One in a specially built tabernacle on West Main 
Street which was a disappointment, but followed by three more within 
the next few years in the S. L. Sheep School auditorium. The first of 
these was conducted by Rev. Gypsy Smith, Jr., the second by our own 
Dr. Theodore Adams, Pastor of the First Baptist Church, Richmond, Vir- 
ginia where he still is and in 1959 was President of the Baptist World 
Alliance. The third was conducted by Dr. Pearce Harris, Pastor of the 
First Methodist Church, Atlanta, Georgia. These were all great preach- 
ers and their sermons were enjoyed by the many who heard them; and, 
the auditorium which seats about a thousand people, was filled most of 
the time. However, little evangelistic ferver was manifest and to say that 



165 



they were great revivals with many rededications and conversions would 
be a misnomer. 

Since then our pastors and Church have tried simultaneous serv- 
ices with some other churches and have had some of our best pastors to 
preach in oiu* Church, including Dr. Clyde Parker, Petersburg, Virginia; 
Dr. Broadus E. Jones, First Church, Norfolk, Virginia and later First 
Church, Raleigh, North Carolina; Dr. C. F. Warren, First Church Char- 
lotte, North Carolina and now Director of the Southern Baptist Thirty 
Thousand Movement; Dr. Norfleet Gardner, First Church, Rockingham, 
North Carolina and others. 

But, we may as well admit it, mass evangelism and the old fashion- 
ed revival and evangelistic ferver that our fathers and grandfathers 
knew has been felt but few times in this generation. It is true of other 
Baptist churches and other denominations. Barring our own North Caro- 
lina Baptist and world evangelist, Billy Graham, few men draw the great 
congregations and move them to revival of religion and conviction of 
sin today. 

Whether that time will ever return or not does not alter the fact 
that pastors and lay people alike must return to more earnest personal 
evangelism and a closer walk with Jesus Christ, the greatest of all per- 
sonal soul winners. Then, it will be as it often was in the dim past, no 
"annual revival", but as a result of the week-by-week preaching by the 
pastor, great numbers will be conxerted. At every service many Chris- 
tians would be, putting it in the words of John Wesley, "strangely 
warmed", whether the minister be a visiting evangelist or the pastor. 



166 



CHAPTER XX 
Spot Check on Growth in Membership 

The number of charter members is not of record, either here or 
at Shiloh, mother Church. The Kehukee Association minutes merely 
show the Church admitted at tlie 1786 session and does not give its mem- 
bership. However, the first reported membership that we do have makes 
it quite obvious the number of charter members was very small. 

Our earliest record is by Elder John Asplund, in his register of 
travels in Eastern North Carolina during 1793 gathering information on 
Baptist history. He reported for the )'ear 1790, just three or four years 
after constitution, only 34 members; 1791, 34 (Also shown in Kehukee 
Association minutes and represented by John Stafford); 1792, 33 (Again 
appearing in Association minutes, represented by Stafford); 1793, 42 
members. Asplund reported only for those three years. In 1796 the As- 
sociational minutes show that Baile)' Jackson represented the Church and 
reported only 21. In 1798 John Stafford was back as messenger and re- 
ported only 19. 

Thus, we see tliat althougli at least four eminent Baptist preachers 
had evangelized in and near the town then called Reading, they had an 
uphill struggle to get Church planted at this place. 

Burkitt and Read, History of the Kehukee Association, published 
in 1803, say: "This Church has never increased very much since her con- 
stitution. They contain, according to accounts retiu-ned to the last As- 
sociation (1802) about 25 members. There are some very respectable 
members in this little Church. Bailey Jackson, Esq., one of their mem- 
bers, has been a member of the General Assembly from that county for 
several years. From their last account we hope a revival is taking place 
in this Church." 

Extant records indicate the membership did increase beginning 
soon thereafter. In five years a branch church was organized "up the 
river," now Ramoth Gilead Church and was constituted an independent 



167 



Church in 1808. The Ramoth Gilead Church book, now in the Oscar 
Etheridge family, shows the Knokscrook Church dismissed that vear 32 
members in order to constitute a Church "up the river." 

David Benedict, History of the Baptist Denomination, Vol. II, 
published in 1813, states that the Church reported in the 1811 session 
of the Chowan Association witli 71 members. 

In 1823 the Chowan Association published in its minutes for the 
first time a list of its churches, with statistics, which showed a member- 
ship of 73. The next year, 89. In 1846 the church baptized 21 and report- 
ed a total membership of 192. 

The 1847 report to the Association showed for the first time a 
break-down between white and colored members - 182 white and 20 
Negro, total 202. In 1855 the report showed 82 baptisms and a total mem- 
bership of 437 - 410 white and 27 colored. The next year it reported 39 
dismissed and a total membership of only 389. 

Ten years later, 1866, the church reported 55 baptisms and yet a 
total membership of only 267. True, the previous year, on November 4, 
the Negro members were dismissed to form a church amongst themselves, 
but that number was probably no more than 40 or 50 at most, seeing 
that in 1855 the number was only 27. In 1870 the number was still only 
277 and in 1877 the number had dropped to only 84. There seems to be 
no explanation for this decline except for one notation in the minutes 
of April 25, 1874, "Decided after motion to drop from roll all members 
who had not attended services and whose addresses could not be found." 
Of course, there is the possibility of a misprint or other error, because 
the next year, 1878, the membership was back up - to 267. 

After ten more years, 1888, the number was down to 227, but soon 
it appears that the church's horizon was altered and it was seeing many 
more people saved and a strong and influential church was in the mak- 
ing, one which would reach far into distant lands with the power of the 
Gospel. 



168 



In 1890 the membeiship had dimbed to 296; 1891, 345; 1896, 535; 
1903, 546; 1906, 608; 1912, 819; 1917, 886; 1925, 742; 1928, 878; 1933, 833; 
1938, 865; 1940, 898; 1941, 900; 1942, 939; 1943, 971; 1944, 980; 1947, 
992; 1949, 1,002. From 1941 to 1949, when the number range was from 
900 to 1,002, the in between years were checked to make sure tliat 1,002 
members in 1949 was our peak number. The records do not reveal that 
we have reached a thousand members since then. This peak in member- 
ship was during the pastorate of W. W. Finlater. The 1960 report to the 
Association gives our number as 989. 



169 



CHAPTER XXI 

Our Daughter Churches 

The Elizabeth City First Baptist Church is proud to claim four 
daughter churches and one granddaughter church, all located in Pas- 
quotank County. We have granted letters to some to help form other 
churches which we cannot claim as daughter churches. 

Ramoth Gilead 




It was several years after the First Church was constituted before 
it realized any great increase in membership, but by 1808 it had increased 
sufficiently that for their convenience enough members, in what we now 
often hear called up the County, were dismissed to form an independent 
Church. The certificate of dismissal is in the first record book of Ramoth 
Gilead Church and now is the possession of Mr. Oscar Etheridge. This 
book as well as the existing books of tlie First Church have recently been 
microfilmed for preservation by the State Department of History and 
Archives. This certificate is as follows: 

170 



This may certify that a petition was handed in to conference on Saturday 
the 27th of August, 1808 by the wing of the church up the River and it was post- 
poned and thought best at a call conference. 

On the next day it was taken up again and finding to be in love and fel- 
lowship among themselves, it was granted in order that they might be constituted 
in a Church up the River and they are dismissed from us and they being in full 
fellowship with us and as for us we being in love and union among ourselves and 
we pray Almighty God to be their Moderator and by His assistance and Holy Spirit 
guide them through life's uneven space. 

Signed by order of conference in behalf of the Church, Baily Jackson, Clerk. 

John Koen, Azariah Evans, Henrj^ West, Owen Williams, Mathias Smithson, 
Mark Wood, Joseph Tutle, Asa Tutle, Dempsey Harrison, Kiddy Koen, Nancy Evans, 
Polly West, Lydia Williams, Lydia Jones, Hannah Wood, Anna Sexton, Nancy Saw- 
yer, Nancy Cartwright, Polly Williams, Elizabeth Smithson, Edy Taylor, Elizabeth 
Tutle, Polly Betts, Laurana Cooper, Lucreasey Harrison, Sally Conner, Sally White- 
hurst, Roda Sexton, Sarah Dell, Fanny Gray, Susannah Jones, Gate of Color and Juda. 

Juda was also probably of Color. It will be noted that modem 
spelling of some of the names is different, but their spelling is under- 
standable to us. On May 7, 1809 the newly constituted Church was re- 
ceived into the Chowan Association by the name of Ramoth Gilead where 
it has been a loyal constituent to this day and is now in perhaps the 
most prosperous period of its history. 

Olive Branch 




171 



Little is known of the formation of our Negro members into their 
independent Church. Howe\'er, it is inappropriate to pass over this per- 
iod of our history without recording here what we do know. Also, tliis 
is an opportime time and space to list in chronological order what record- 
ed information we have on our Negro members up to the time of tlieir 
organization as an independent Church. 

When the first members were received is not of record. It is pos- 
sible some were charter members or received soon tliereafter. The fu'st 
record of Negro members is the dismissal of two along with white mem- 
bers to form Ramoth Gilead Church in 1808. They were Kate and Juda. 
Dr. S. J. Wheeler's sketch of the Church recorded in the 1847 Minutes of 
the Chowan Association of which he was Clerk for twenty-seven years 
shows 182 white members and twenty Negro members. From then to 
1856 the number of colored according to the Minutes ranged from twen- 
ty to twenty-se\en when the number jumped to fourty-four colored and 
345 white. The next year there were fifty-one colored members. 

On April 24, 1858 the church minutes give an account of "a colored 
sister, Rachel Jackson, granted a letter to join some other church of the 
same order. ' Probably sold by her master as a sla\'e girl to someone in 
another county or state. 

It appears from the following motion that our colored members 
were given some privileges of self-expression and separate meetings as 
tliey desired even before the close of the Civil War: "On motion it was 
resolved that the Church allow the colored members to hold a confer- 
ence once a month." Associational Minutes for 1861, the year the Civil 
^^''ar began, records sixty-seven colored members and 1862, seventy-two. 
This was the last report showing colored members separately. In 1865 
the Church was not represented in the Association, but the Church rec- 
ord shows that on No\^ember 4, 1865 "The colored members had been 
using tlie Meeting House once a month for services. They now asked for 
letters of dismission so they might organize a Church amongst them- 
sehes, which was granted. They were allowed the use of the Church for 
twehe months." This does not mean complete secession of colored mem- 
bers attending services in the Church of their former masters. For a num- 

172 



ber of years after they had formed their own Church many of them, 
particularly the elderly ones, even in the memory of some of our older 
citizens frequently attended our services. 

There being seventy-two colored members in 1862, the last count 
we have, it is possible there were se\enty-five or eighty dismissed on 
November 4, 1865 to form their own Church. The following recordings 
in our church minutes reveal that as late as August 22, 1869 they had 
not erected a meeting house: 

January 5, 1867 "Tliat tlie colored bretliren be allowed the use 
of the house when we are not using it." October 5, 1867 "On motion the 
colored Baptists are allowed the use of the Church for a protracted meet- 
ing." August 22, 1869 "The Deacons were asked to inform tlie colored 
brethren that unless they repair the windows of the Church they would 
be deprived of tlie use of it." 

This is the last reference in our church minutes of Negro mem- 
bers or their separate Church. The matter of repairing the windows is 
the only indication of any friction whatsoever between the two races in 
relation to the Church. \^''hether they repaired the windows which they 
apparently had damaged and continued to use the Church is not of rec- 
ord. 

On March 24, 1861 "Delegates were appointed to the Association 
to be held the following May and Clerk, C. W. Kellenger, was instruct- 
ed to invite the Association to meet with us the following year, but at 
the Church conference of May 25, 1861 the delegates reported that in 
consequence of the excited state of the country the delegates did not at- 
tend." Excitement of probably an entirely different nature was probably 
rampant when the Association met in 1865 and the Church was again 
not represented. However, in spite of the excitement resulting from the 
beginning and ending of the Civil War, there is no indication in the 
record of any demonstrations reflecting upon any bad relations between 
the two races within tlie Church. On the contrary, it seems there was a 
sense of the people's need of God. The year tliat war broke out there 
were fifty baptisms and the year it closed there were fifty-five baptisms, 
which would be an enviable record for us even today when we have 

173 



nearly a thousand members. In all probability, about the same ratio of 
colored baptisms shown above was reflected in the many baptisms during 
those terrible war years. 

Just when Olive Branch perfected their organization, when they 
erected their first Meeting House, first pastor, etc. is lost from us. We 
do know that the first Meeting House was erected on the lot joining on 
the north side of the present one on Brooks Avenue. 

The name Olive Branch, is of great significance indicating, it 
seems, that there was peace between the new Church and their former 
white people's Church. Following is another quotation from our Min- 
utes to substantiate the apparent goodwill between the two races with 
regard to their churches: April 21, 1883 the parent Church "appointed 
F. F. Cohoon as a committee to solicit contributions to aid in supporting 
tlie colored Baptist Association to be held in this County, at Union 
Chapel in the next month." 

However, in 1889 a dispute arose within the Olive Branch Church, 
the cause of which this author is not familiar with, and a split occurred 
which resulted in the organization of the present Corner Stone Baptist 
Cluirch on South Martin Street. 



Corinth 




174 



It appears that in 1890 a few members living in the vicinity of 
Cartwright's School House had for some time been running a Sunday 
School and sentiment had developed for a Church to be organized. The 
First Church having moved into its new brick building offered to sell the 
old building to the brethren in that neighborhood for $300.00. It is reason- 
able to assume that the brethren out there being members of the First 
Church did not react favorably and the building was advertised for sale. 
But still no sale. The Church needed money to apply on the new build- 
ing debt, but by June 7, 1891 the Church had a change of heart and we 
find tliis entry in the Minutes: "That this Church give the brethren at 
Cartwright's School House the old Church with the understanding that 
the brethren secure good title to the land that they move the Church on." 
Between then and October 18, 1891 it was torn down and moved; and 
on tliis date "Sam Modlin was appointed to see that the land on which 
the old Church stood was cleaned." The timbers are in the present sanct- 
uary of Corinth Church. 

On the following July 13, 1891 in a called conference "the object 
was stated by the pastor (C. A. C. Thomas). On motion tlie following 
bretliren and sisters were granted letters to help organize a Baptist 
Church at Cartwright's School House: W. H. Cartwright, W. K. Carter, 
C. S. Ives, C. D. Ives, P. H. Ives, Sisters Lydie Simpson, Louise Pritchard, 
Mary A. Bright, Eliza Carter, Lenora Carter, Maggie Ives and Annie 
Ives." Five days later, W. N. Parker, M. G. Harris, Elizabeth Parker and 
Sarah J. Parker. Next month on the 16tli, Margaret Walker. September 
20, Mrs. Martha Ives, Carrie Norris, Thomas W. Davis. And on October 
18, 1891, Elisha Harris, W. A. Moody and Betty Moody. 

Today, Corinth is one of the best rural churches in Eastern North 
Carolina and the First Church is proud to claim it as a daughter Church, 
even though it did at first attempt to realize $300.00 from it for the old 
building. Rev. W. R. Pursell is the present pastor. 

175 



Blackwell Memorial 




The idea of a mission on North Road Street originated in the 
Sunday School which resulted in a called conference of the Church on 
October 18, 1896 "to consider a request of the Sunday School to pur- 
chase a lot for the purpose of establishing a Sunday School in some other 
portion of the City. A committee of six: Dr. C. S. Blackwell, Chainnan, 
G. W. Ward, E. F. Aydlett, xVI. N. Sawyer, Samuel Modlin and I. M. 
Meekins was appointed to select a lot and G. D. B. Pritchard authorized 
to solicit funds for the lot selected." The committee reported later that 
"they have selected the lot on North Road Street next to the southwest 
corner of North Road and Cypress Streets, 50x110 feet with an alley at 
the back, owned by Percy Vaughan . . . and recommend the purchase . . . 
cost of which will be $350.00." The matter was tabled and on November 
8, 1896 the Church voted thirty-four against two to buy the lot. It ap- 
pears that Mr. Pritchard made no solicitations for money because pledges 
were taken at this conference amounting to the $350.00 needed. 



176 



On June 11, 1899 the committee recommended that two chapels 
be built exactly alike, one on North Road Street and one on Dry Point 
(Riverside Avenue) at an aggregate cost of probably $1,800.00 or $2,000.00. 
Witliin the next eight months the committee purchased a lot on Dry 
Point and erected tlie two chapels. The North Road Street chapel was 
ready for occupancy first, probably the fourtli Sunday in February, 1900. 
On February 18, 1900 it was "ordered that surplus chairs in the Church 
be placed in the chapel for temporary use, and J. G. Gregory asked to 
attend to that and try to get chapel ready for use on the next Sunday." 
Tlie final report of this chapel building committee is indeed interesting: 

March 18, 1900 Chapel committee reports: First, that we have purchased 
the lot on Riverside Avenue (Dry Point) as heretofore reported and the deed is 
herewith filed showing the description. Second, that we ha\e erected two chapels 
as requested, one on the lot on North Road Street and one on Riverside Avenue at 
a cost of $2,638.69. Third, that the houses cost the same each and are exactly alike 
except the tower on the one on North Road Street is some higher and cost 85.00 
more. Fourth, that we have collected and paid out $1,320.69 and owe 1,318.00. 
Fifth, that there is now due on pledges as per report of Treasurer, $1,021.00. Sixth, 
that the committee selected Brother M. N. Sawyer as its Treasurer and he made his 
report to this committe which is made a part of this report. 

On April 1, 1900 a committee of five was named for each chapel 
to have supervision of same. The committee for the North Road Street 
Chapel was J. G. Gregory, J. R. Pinner, G. W. Brothers, Jr., E. F. Aydlett 
and M. M. Sawyer. 

When electric lights were installed in tlie First Church the two 
kerosene-burning chandeliers Vv'ere loaned - one to the Ri\'erside chapel 
and the other to the North Road Street chapel. 

Not only did the Church through the above committee organize 
and supervise a Sunday School, but on October 28, 1900 Rev. J. B. Fere- 
bee, a First Church member, was secured to preach every Sunday night. 
He continued to preach under the auspices of the First Church until the 
Church was organized and served as its first pastor for a year. The First 
Church did on December 12, 1900 ask the State Mission Board for $150.00 
a year to assist in its mission effort. 

The record shows that on July 6, 1902 a new Church was about 
to be organized: 

177 



A motion that if in the opinion of the Road Street Brethren it is desirable 
that they organize a church, we are willing and will agree that if they do so, finan- 
cial arrangements may continue on the present basis the remainder of this year - that 
is, those who take letters will be expected to pay to this church the pledges already 
made for pastor's salary, and we will see that their pastor is paid to the end of this 
year. 

Then on September 7, 1902 tlie following were granted letters to 
help organize the Church: 

Samuel Modlin, Mr. and Mrs. H. M. Ballance, Miss M. A. Bell, Mr. and Mrs. 
J. W. Ballance, Mr. and Mrs. A. C. Bell, J. O. Etheridge, Lucy M. Williams, Mrs. 
M. D. Gregory, Miss Bessie Gregory, Mrs. Mary E. Trueblood, Emily A. Goodwin, 
Mrs. Virginia Weymouth, W. M. Price, G. W. Brothers, C. A. Banks, C. M. Burgess, 
Nannie Burgess, Mrs. G. W. Brothers, R. T. Pritchard, Sarah F. Cartwright and 
William Cartwright. 

On October 9, 1902 the Church was organized with forty-nine 
charter members including the above t"\venty-four dismissed from here; 
except Mrs. G. W. Brothers and on October 12 we granted letters to 
J. M. Brockett and Mr. and Mrs. Elias Williams to unite with them. The 
next month tlie Chapel was dedicated as the first home of the new 
Church and during tlie next six montlis tlie First Church on se\'eral oc- 
casions granted more letters: January 11, 1903, M. N. Sawyer; February 
1, Mr. and Mrs. M. M. Morrisette, Fannie Kelly, Mr. and Mrs. C. D. 
Gallop, Mrs. J. R. Banks, Mr. and Mrs. J. C. Chappell, Mrs. C. F. Bliven, 
Mary Chappell, Mary Modlin, Mrs. C. L. Whitehurst, Lula Heath, Mr. 
and Mrs. W. H. Heath, Sallie Boetcher, Walter S. Cartwriglit, Mr. and 
Mrs. T. S. Davenport, Mary Carver and Maude Ferebee. February 8, 
Mr. and Mrs. S. S. Leary, Lillian Leary, Mrs. S. E. Saunders, Mattie L. 
Saunders, Mrs. Annie L. Jackson, Mary Bell, Mr. and Mrs. J. W. Edney, 
Herman Edney, Noah Garrett, Mary Garrett, Jaketh Garrett, W, A. 
Garrett and Mattie Banks. February 11, Mrs. Mary Sivills, B. S. Arm- 
strong, Mrs. Delia Everton, Mrs. R. J. Mitchell and Mr. and Mrs. M. V. 
Gilbert and Mrs. R. J. Mitchell. March 1, Mrs. Lula Overton, W. H. 
Trueblood, Miss Lucy White, Mrs. Josephine Spence, Mrs. Mary B. 
Raper, Missess Rose and Curtis Goodwin and Miss Lillian Brothers. On 
June 1, Mrs. Neppie Gregory and Mrs. Dora West. 



178 



After the organization of tlie new Church the parent Church on 
November 2, 1902 agreed to pay $450.00 through tlie State Mission Board 
to enable them to have preaching twice each Sunday on condition they 
raise $250.00. 

On September 11, 1904 tlie new Church had been considering the 
purchase of the northeast corner of North Road and Cypress Streets 
for a new building. Our Church apparently had suggested that it would 
give them tlie proceeds from the sale of the old mission lot, however, on 
this date it was agreed to borrow $600.00 and give to the new Church in 
lieu thereof. The corner was purchased and their present sanctuary be- 
gan. They continued to worship in the chapel until the new sanctuary 
was completed and dedicated on December 11, 1904. 

Four years later Blackwell Memorial Church drew still more 
numerical and financial strength from tlie mother Church. This time, 
howe\er, because of an unfortunate dispute in tlie mother Church the 
background of which centered around who should be organist. The dis- 
pute culminated in separations as follows: 

August 7, 1907. Fellowship was withdrawn from Brother E. F. 
Aydlett who in turn requested tliat fellowship be witlidrawn from Mrs. 
Aydlett and their tliree children, Edwin, Evelyn and Ettie, stating that 
they would not accept letters of dismission. The following members then 
requested tliat their names be dropped from the roll and on motion tlie 
rules were suspended and requests were granted: Mr. and Mrs. J. H. 
Aydlett, Mr. and Mrs. Abner Aydlett, Mr. and Mrs. H. T. Aydlett, Mr. 
and Mrs. Noah Burfoot and children Noah and Ada, Mr. and Mrs. W. L. 
Cohoon, Mrs. May Guirkin, Miss Byrd Kramer, Mr. and Mrs. L. E. 
Skinner, W. H. Weatherly, Hunter Morgan, Mrs. Fannie Whitehurst, Mr. 
and Mrs. M. M. Sawyer, O. F. Gilbert, J. H. Card, Cordell Card and B. H. 
White. White changed his request to one for a letter which was granted. 
It is assumed that most or all of the above persons were accepted at 
Blackwell Memorial. At the same conference W. E. Swain and Miss Inez 
Reid were granted letters to join Blackwell. 



179 



August 11, 1907. The following were dropped from the roll upon 
request: Mrs. Betie Morgan, Mrs. M. Owens, Miss Eldora C. Sampson 
and Miss Mattie Whitehurst. August 14, 1907. Dropped upon request: 
Mrs. Ed Pappendick, Miss Louise Pappendick, Mr. and Mrs. Manlif God- 
frey and letters to BlackweU were granted to Mr. and Mrs. J. W. Modlin. 
September 4, 1907. Letters were granted to W. E. Evans and N. A. Jones 
to unite with BlackweU Memorial. October 2, 1907, Miss Jennie Rhodes, 
Miss Mattie Brothers, Mr. and Mrs. Samuel Newbold, James Newbold, 
Mr. and Mrs. C. W. Stevens, Pearl and Susie Stevens, and Miss Fannie 
Dawson. November 6, 1907, W. F. Whitehurst and December 11, Mrs. 
J. R. Banks. 

The above actions meant quite a boost to BlackweU Memorial, how- 
ever, through the years many of them have returned to the First Church; 
and in spite of tlie troublesome experience in the early part of 1907, the 
record shows that tlie mother Church had a very fruitful year. At the 
request of the Deacons, J. G. Gregory, Clerk, on August 11, 1907 gave a 
summary of the progress for the year just closed. In his report he stated 
that sixty-one members had been added by letter and experience, ten 
restored and fifty-two by baptism making a total of 123. During the year 
there had been a total loss of 101, leaving a net gain of twenty-two. In 
addition the pastor had been granted leave to hold meetings elsewhere 
in which over 200 conversions had been reported. The church services 
had been well attended and he stated that if there were any who had not 
attended a prayer meeting or communion service lately they did not know 
what they were missing. The three Sunday Schools operated by the 
Church were moving along well with an enrollment of 600. The Woman's 
Missionary Society and its auxiliary work and the Ladies Aid Society 
were all in a flourishing condition. 

But, getting back to our Daughter Church, BlackweU Memorial has 
grown to equal strengtli to that of the mother Church and notwithstand- 
ing some brief misunderstandings in tlie early days the two have since 
gotten along well together and we are proud indeed of BlackweU Me- 
morial's achievements in the kingdom of our Lord. Dr. Robert W. Kick- 
lighter is the present pastor. 

180 






Other new churches formed in much lesser degrees by members 
dismissed for that piii"pose: 

Woodville 

On September 27, 1873, Mr. and Mrs. K. R. Pendleton were dis- 
missed to help in the organization of a Church at Woodville. 

Elbow Schoolhouse 

Norfolk County, Virginia: On October 27, 1888, W. H. Halstead 
and wife were granted letters to help organize a Baptist Church at Elbow 
Schoolhouse. 

Riverside 

October 27, 1901 Mr. and Mrs. W. H. Long and Mr. and Mrs. 
J. H. Long, Alpine and Mattie Long were granted letters to help organize 
a new Church near Riverside Schoolhouse. 

Calvary 
(Our Granddaughter Church) 




18] 



From the record it appeared for a few years that Calvary might 
have been our daughter Church. In 1899 a chapel was erected and Sun- 
day School and preaching sei-vices were conducted for the next twelve 
or tliirteen years witli some help with tlie preacher's salary from the 
State Mission Board (See chapter on Missions Other tlian Daughter 
Churches). However, for some unknown reason the Church lost interest 
or the people who had benefited by the project lost interest. The mission 
was abandoned and in 1914 tlie chapel and lot was sold. Seven years 
later Blackwell Memorial, our daughter Church, under the leadership 
of E. F. Aydlett and S. S. Davis, Sr., bought the chapel and on April 
10, 1921 organized tlie Church. Thus we must concede to Blackwell 
Memorial the honor of being the mother Church and we of the First 
Church take the role of grandmother Church. 

Several years ago the original chapel was accidentally burned 
but within a year the congregation built the present building on the same 
lot. Calvary is a full time Church with a membership of 300. The Church 
owns a pastor's home and the present pastor is Rev. Paul Faircloth. 



182 



CHAPTER XXII 

Pastor's Homes 

The pastor's home is commonly called the parsonage by Baptists 
and many other denominations. One of our Clerks many years ago vent- 
ured to call it the pastorium. Episcopalians call their pastor's home the 
rectory and Presbyterians call it the manse. If this writer may be permit- 
ted to say so, he does not like either as well as the title of this chapter. 
However, since the minutes with one or two exceptions refer to it as the 
parsonage, that is the teiminology used for the most part throughout 
this chapter. 

Church minutes reveal the fact that we have had three parsonages. 
There may have been one earlier than tlie three described below, but 
it is \'ery doubtful. 

First Parsonage 

Unfortunately, we cannot say when the first one was built. It was 
in use at the time of our earliest minutes, 1857. On August 27, 1859 "On 
motion John R. Lynn was allowed the use of the parsonage for $175.00 
- the lower rent to be $75.00 and one half of that to be devoted to the 
schooling of Beneficiaries on behalf of the Church." It is difficult to 
determine exactly what that meant except that it is clear, a certain 
amount received was to be devoted to the schooling of beneficiaries on 
behalf of tlie Church. The parsonage was not being occupied by the 
pastor and John R. Lynn wanted to use it for a private school. It was 
located on the northwest corner of Main and Dyer streets where the 
sanctuary now stands and other than being rented for a schoolhouse 
when pastors were not occupying it, it was also some times rented to 
fraternal lodges also as a residence at times. Fortunately, it stood long 
enough that some of our older citizens remember it. Mrs. G. R. Little 
who was born and still lives on the northeast corner of Main and Dyer 
streets, remembers that it was a nice two story house and that families 
other than pastors who occupied it were Monroe Jackson and that he 
died there; George Pendleton and his sister, Mrs. Kate Pool. 



183 



Dr. R. R. Overby is the first known pastor to occupy this parson- 
age. Doubtless there were others before him but the records do not go 
far enough back to tell us. On October 22, 1859 when Overby was 
called as pastor the minutes state that "He was to have $700.00 and 
house rent and furniture; and a committee was appointed to provide 
funds and purchase some beds for the parsonage. This action probably 
cancelled the August 27 agreement with John R. Lynn to occupy it for 
a school and giving free tuition to the Church beneficiaries. However, 
a year later, August 25, 1860, the Church was still interested in the bene- 
ficiaries and "appointed Brother Morgan and Brother Overby to attend 
to the beneficiaries and see that they attend school." Just how long 
Overby occupied the parsonage we do not know - probably not more 
than two or three years at most - because on July 2, 1865 we find A. L. 
Jones occupying it and the trustees were "ordered to inform him that 
the rent must be paid or he must move." He very likely moved because 
on September 10, 1865 "the disposition of the parsonage was left to the 
discretion of the deacons." Furthermore, we do know tliat some time 
later Mr. Overby bought or built a home in Camden County, near the 
present Sawyer's Creek Baptist Church. His grave is near that old home. 

On August 31, 1866 "Mr. Weatherly (H. T. Weatherly, a former 
pastor) wanted to rent both rooms of the schoolhouse (Parsonage), and 
Mr. Wilder (otherwise unidentified) wanted to rent one room. It was 
agreed the two rooms be rented to Mr. Weatherly, he to do whatever 
repairs necessary. The upper part rented to the Masons for five years, 
$50.00 for the first year and $100.00 for each year of the remaining four 
years." For some unknown reason Mr. Weatherly failed to use the two 
schoolrooms as agreed to and on November 3, 1866 the Church agreed 
to "fit up the lower portion for a residence for the pastor." This was a 
new pastor. Dr. N. B. Cobb, coming to succeed Dr. R. R. Overby. The 
deacons were to attend to the work of fitting it up; and "J. Q. Cartwright, 
Martin Casey and T. R. Bland were appointed to get the furniture, 
scattered during the war." 

On December 1, 1866 Quinton Simpson who, the next year enter- 



184 



ed college as a ministerial student, "was allowed the use of the benches 
and desks belonging to the schoolroom (of the parsonage) and brethren 
were requested to meet and work on the parsonage." 

This establishes the fact that the building was furnished before the 
war and tliat the lower portion was spacious enough and suitable for 
at least three schoolrooms and that the schoolroom benches and desks 
being removed made the lower floor a suitable apartment for the pas- 
tor, though presumably witli a very small family or just a wife or, for 
all that we know a bachelor. Dr. Cobb occupied the lower apartment 
during his pastorate which was terminated in 1869. Dr. Overby succeed- 
ed him for a second pastorate and, living in his own home in Camden, 
left the parsonage again available to rent. This time it was on April 24, 
1871 "rented to W. C. Dawson for $10.00 a month. Nothing had been 
recei\'ed for the parsonage from January to March, except $5.00 from 
the Knights of Jerico." This was presumably a lodge of some sort which 
had been occupying the upper portion of the building. 

The June 21, 1873 Treasurer's report showed "$130.00 rent re- 
ceived from the parsonage." May 26, 1877 "Parsonage Committee report- 
ed work completed (Probably a repair job)" and the deacons' meeting 
of November 14, 1877 shows "rent of parsonage $100.00." 1881, we find 
it still rented. "On motion the Treasurer of this Church, Brother Cohoon, 
wait on Mr. William Chandler who occupies the parsonage and make 
immediate arrangement according to the agreement made by said Chand- 
ler when he rented said house; to pay the rent due and by some means 
make the balance of the rent for this year, 1881, secure and safe; and 
if said Chandler fails to make those arrangements, then to vacate the 
premises at once." Whether he paid up and continued to keep the agree- 
ment we cannot say, but on October 4, 1882 it was again "authorized 
parsonage be rented next year for $100.00 to be paid monthly." At the 
time of this authorization and during the occupancy by Chandler, J. M. C. 
Luke was pastor. Why he did not live in the parsonage is uncertain. We 
do know the Church extended him continued absences because of ser- 
ious illnesses. He tried to resign but the Church would not give him up. 
However, on January 1, 1883 he "informed the Church he would not 



185 



serve any longer" and the parsonage continued to be rented until Octo- 
ber, 1883 when the new pastor, George Baker, came and it was vacated 
for him. He occupied it until the early part of 1888 when it burned or 
was so badly damaged that it had to be torn down. 

Proof of tliis fire is in minutes of a deacons' meeting on March 13, 
1888. "E. F. Aydlett was appointed to collect the insurance on the Bap- 
tist Church property and Brother Bland (Thomas R.) was appointed a 
committee to confer with Brother Baker concerning a house for a par- 
sonage." In all probability a house was rented for the pastor until a new 
parsonage could be built. 

Second Parsonage 




On June 6, 1888 "Thos. R. Bland, E. F. Aydlett, F. F. Cohoon, 
K. R. Newbold and W. T. Love, Sr. were appointed a committee for the 
purpose of building a new parsonage." The history of this one is about 
as varied and exciting as that of the previous one. The committee on 
November 24, 1888 reported "the work done at a total cost of $820.74 
including out-houses, fence, four stoves and waiters, pump, specifications 
and three years insurance." 

186 



This parsonage was erected on the opposite side of the Church 
from the previous one; the west side, on a lot purchased in 1860 from 
George W. Bell for $125.00 and about where the present parsonage 
stands. We quote in part from that deed: 

8th day of February A. D. 1860. 
North Carohna 
Pasquotank County. 

George W. Bell, party . . . first part and Maxy Sanderlin, Sr., James Schott 
and Robert Simpson, Trustees . . . second part . . . (Description). 

Bounded and described as follows, to wit: 

Beginning at the outer edge of the side walk on the North side of Main 
Street in a line with said Bell's yard fence, said fence being the line, running back 
to a northerly course two hundred and eight feet, thence easterly to the corner of 
said Church lot, thence bounding said Church lot southerly to Main Street, thence 
up said street westerly to first station containing one quarter of an acre more or less. 
To have and to hold unto them the said Trustees and their successors in office the 
above described lot of land in fee simple forever. 

Dr. J. L. White, Sr. was this parsonage's first occupant. Unlike 
the first parsonage, tliis one was wired for electric lights, but this was 
not authorized until May 28, 1894 "at a cost not to exceed $100.00." When 
it was only nine years old the deacons on October 6, 1897 "considered 
offering it and the lot for sale at $1,500.00. It could not have been in 
too bad repair in only nine years and the reason probably was that the 
Church felt that a larger one was needed and that it would be more 
satisfactory if it were located away from the Church lot. However, it 
was decided not to sell. Mr. John Cartwright offers a clue as to what was 
done instead. He states that originally the "L" seen in the drawing above 
was not on the house - that it was a plain oblong shaped two story house 
with a hall all the way through one side downstairs. A further clarifica- 
tion is probably in the minutes of October 31, 1897 "reported the cost of 
necessary repairs would be only $225.00 and $75.00 of that amount was 
pledged right then." The committee had already built a fence around 
it and presented bills for it amounting to $21.19. There may have been 
some repairs necessary, but our theory is that the bulk of the $225.44 
needed was for the addition of the "L" which Mr. Cartwright says v/as 
added some years after the parsonage was built. 



187 



The next entry in the minutes concerning this parsonage is inter- 
esting: In September, 1902 "the cookroom was painted for $2.00." 

On September 14, 1902 it is noted that I. M. Meekins wanted to 
buy this parsonage and land to give him additional footage on the east 
side of his lot on which to build a home for himself. But the Church 
agreed to sell him only six feet at $50.00 a foot, he to move tlie building 
and fence to a site to be designated by a committee. The deacons were 
on June 7, 1903 appointed to serve as this committe and on June 28 they 
recommended moving the building in the center of the Church's remain- 
ing 100 feet, six inch lot and on a line witli the new Church annex (Now 
"the old annex"). This being done tlie parsonage remained there until 
1908 when it was moved to the rear of the present sanctuary facing 
Dyer Street to make room for a new parsonage. On August 25, 1907 in 
special conference the Church "considered building a new parsonage 
and that the old parsonage be moved to the rear of the Church and rent 
it out." Mr. S. J. Twine remembers distinctly that it was moved the next 
year, 1908. He remembers that Dr. John F. Vines was its last occupant 
on Main Street and its first on Dyer Street. Dr. E. W. Stone who came 
on September 2, 1908 was its next occupant at the Dyer Street location. 
Succeeding Stone was Rev. L. T. Reed and Mr. Twine says that he "com- 
plained a lot about having to live in the back yard of the Church." How- 
ever, he remained in it until the present one was built and was its first 
occupant. 

At its Dyer Street location among its tenants were the R. C. Abbotts 
while their home on West Church Street was being built, Miss Florence 
Bell and Mrs. Anna B. Lewis. Mrs. Lewis was its last tenant at this lo- 
cation. She was Pasquotank County Superintendent of Public Welfare. 

Once again this building had to be moved - tliis time in 1928 back 
of the present parsonage and facing the newly opened Colonial Avenue 
to make room for the present Educational Building. Among its occupants 
here were Mrs. S. E. Leigh, Mrs. Grace Coley and family and for several 
years Miss Martha Ellen Barr occupied the upstairs apartment, rent 
free, while she was our Minister of Music. 

Finally, tlie building was torn down in 1958 and the space is 
now being used as a parking lot for Sunday Churchgoers. 

188 



Third and Present Parsonage 




First reference to the building of a new parsonage was on August 
25, 1907 at a special conference called by the deacons. They recommend- 
ed a new parsonage to cost not less than $3000.00 nor more than 84000.00. 
The recommendation was adopted and $2,150.00 in pledges were then 
taken. The building was to be done "the following spring when the 
weather opened up." Building Committee was I. M. Meekins, W. T. 
Love. Sr., j. J. Wliite, Sr.. E. C. Cherry, W. K. Carter and J. R. Pinner. 
Howe\er, the work did not get under way for some unknown reason un- 
til some time in 1912. It is possible the delay was caused by failure to 
get immediate permission to mo\e two gra\es to make room for the 
larger parsonage proposed. This permission finally being given on Ma\ 
6. 1912, work soon began. 

It appears that a number of interested members met unofficially 
on April 29, 1912 and discussed the parsonage situation. They decided 
to call a special conference of the Church, which conference was held 
on May 5, 1912. In this meeting the parsonage was referred to as the 



189 



pastorium for the first time and a committee whose names are not given 
having been appointed at the April 29 meeting recommended as follows: 
"1. That this Church shall cause to be built an up-to-date pastorium, 
which we estimate will cost between four and five thousand dollars and 
that the same be erected on the vacant lot west of the Church building 
(The lot from which the old parsonage had been moved in 1908). 2. That 
the Church appoint a committee to be known as a Building Committee 
who shall devise and recommend plans for the proposed building, and 
do otlier tilings necessary, and report to the Church in a short time. 
Adopted. Committee: G. W. Ward, I. M. Meelcins, W. T. Love, Sr., J. L. 
Pritchard and Dr. S. W. Gregory." 

The record does not show just when it was completed, but it was 
certainly within the next 12 montlis and its first occupant was L. T. Reed. 

This building has also had some fire damage, probably not very 
much, but on September 25, 1918 is the following notation in the Church 
minutes: "The pastorium woodhouse having been burned and the pas- 
torium having been damaged by the fire" a committee was appointed 
"to adjust the loss with the insurance companies and make necessary 
repairs." 

Believe it or not, as late as 1921 the Treasurer's annual report 
shows an item of $300.00 rent collected from the pastor. How long this 
had been a practice we do not know but happily, the practice was soon 
thereafter discontinued. 

The garage for the pastor's automobile and the cement runway 
to the street were built in 1923. 

The present pastor states that in 1956-57 the entire house was re- 
decorated inside by replacing wallpaper and putting in its place paint 
in some of the rooms. In 1958 the style of die house was changed out- 
side by removing a large front and east porch and adding dormer 
windows at a cost of $7,600.00. This brings out the full lines of the beauti- 
ful architecture and it is considered one of the most elegant houses in 
the city. The home consists of living room, dining room, den or sitting 



190 



room, kitchen, five bedrooms, two full baths, spacious halls and six 
closets. The dormer windows help provide a useful third floor. There 
is a central hot water heating system and the house is conservatively 
valued at $25,000.00. Each pastor furnishes it to suit himself as the 
Church only furnishes an electric range and refrigerator. 



191 



CHAPTER XXIII 

Ordained Ministers Other Than Pastors 
Holding Membership in the Church 

Extant records reveal the names of quite a long list of other min- 
isters at sometime belonging to the Church - some natives and ordained 
here, some joining for convenience or other reasons. Some rose to posi- 
tions of prominence and influence. Unlike the list of pastors who were 
listed in chronological order, these are listed alphabetically: 

Williamson Askew. He and his wife, Anna M., and his daughter, 
Mary E., were received by letter from Powell's Point Church on April 
21, 1880 and on March 25, 1882 were granted letters "to join some other 
Church of the same faith and order." However, they apparently did not 
deposit their letters until after 1887 because the Associational minutes 
show him to be an ordained minister here until that year. 

L. C. Brickhouse. There appears several notations in the Church 
minutes of money being raised to assist him in Wake Forest College - one 
being on February 22, 1879. There is no record of him being licensed or 
ordained here. He was probably ordained by some church he was ser\'ing 
as a student pastor or some church who called him upon completion of 
his formal training. He was here at a business conference on July 22, 
1882 as Elder L. C. Brickhouse and presided. 

R. Wells Briggs. A Gates County native. The 1850 Gates County 
census reports him a blind minister. Although, he must have been only 
a licensed minister, because his name first appears in the Association 
minutes in 1858 - a licentiate from this church - continued to be so re- 
ported until 1865 when he was reported as an ordained minister. On the 
contrary, Shiloh records reveal that he moved there sometime in the 
1850's, was ordained as pastor on September 1, 1859 and continued as 
pastor preaching when war conditions permitted until 1867. Shiloh 
Church built him a home at Riddle but he later moved to Shiloh and 
died there about 1890 or 1891 in the memory of some members still liv- 
ing. He was buried there and the present baptistry is over his grave. He 

192 



could have been ordained and pastor at Shiloh and still hold membership 
here, as revealed by Associational minutes, but customs have changed 
and there are no such practices today. 

S. F. Bristow. Pastor at Woodville 1905-1907. 

D. C. Brooks. Who first came to Salem as pastor from Richmond, 
Virginia. At the conclusion of his pastorate he became the first Associa- 
tional Missionary (Later known as Promotional Secretary), moved to 
Elizabetli City and united with our Church on June 2, 1946. From this 
position he became an Associate in the Sunday School department of 
the Baptist State Convention and was given a letter of dismission August 
1, 1948. In 1960 he became Editor of Young People's Literature with the 
Southern Baptist Sunday School Board in Nashville, Tennessee. 

Thomas Butler (Licentiate). First found in the Associational min- 
utes of 1831 as a lay delegate. In tliose days ordinations were by an As- 
sociational Presbytery upon petition of the churches. In the minutes 
of 1839 we find "On motion the petition of the Church at Elizabeth City 
for the ordination of Thomas Butler was deferred until the next meeting. 
Brethren Abner Berry and J. W. Brockett were appointed a committee to 
proceed to Elizabeth City and inquire into the expediencv of ordaining 
Brother Butler and report to the next Association." 1840 - the committee 
reported "that it was inexpedient at his time and recommend that he 
travel more in the bounds of the Association." There is no record in the 
minutes of his ordination. However, he could have gone somewhere else 
and been ordained and in view of the fact that the Church petitioned for 
his ordination, he is given the benefit of the doubt and listed here. 

W. J. Crowson. The Church minutes of May 4, 1901 re\'eal that 
he requested and was granted a Presbytery to be called for the purpose 
of ordaining him. By this time the Association had decided that it had 
no business interfering with local autonomy in the matter of ordaining 
ministers and it was in this case up to the Church. The ordination took 
place on May 19, 1901. Dr. W. R. Cullom gave the charge, but a letter 
from Dr. Cullom dated August 19, 1960 states that he does not remember 



193 



it nor the person. The Associational minutes report him only for 1902 
and in all probability he moved out of the Association. While a member 
of our Church he was secured to preach for a short time at tlie mission 
on Parsonage Street. He was granted a letter of dismissal November 23, 
1902 but the minutes do not designate where he expected to go. 

Spencer Chaplain. Shown only in 1906-1907 Associational min- 
utes as being a member of this Church. 

Josiah Crudup. Shown only in the 1906 Associational minutes. 

J. E. Davenport. Appears as Moderator at the January 4, 1897 
business conference. This was during Dr. C. S. Blackwell's pastorate, 
therefore, he was not an interum pastor. He could have been a supply 
while Dr. Blackwell was away on Christmas and New Year vacation. 
Rehoboth Church claims him as its seventh pastor. 

P. S. C. Davis. Transferred from Berea on October 22, 1881 and 
was elected deacon on February 25, 1882. August 23, 1884 "On motion 
P. S. C. Davis be ordained to the full work of the ministry. On November 
26, 1887 he was granted a letter to unite with the Rehobotli Church 
where he became its third pastor and was pastor of other churches in 
this area including Shiloh, Corinth and Belhaven. He died in Belhaven 
and was buried at Corinth. After his pastorate at Rehoboth he returned 
to the First Baptist Church on November 15, 1905. When or where he 
went from here is not shown in the record. 

J. B. Ferebee. Whether or not he was ordained by this Church 
we are unable to say for sure, probably so. His name first appears in the 
Associational minutes as an ordained minister from this Church in 1897 
and continued to be so reported until 1907 when he transferred, doubtless 
to the Blackwell Memorial. Blackwell claims him as a charter member 
and they may be right, but the records conflict. While a member of our 
Church he was secured in October, 1900 to preach at the Road Street 
Mission (Chapel) in which capacity he continued until the Church was 
organized there in 1904 and continued as their first pastor for about a 
year. He was also pastor at Berea about the turn of the century. On No- 
vember 10, 1901 our minutes show that he requested that his name be 

194 



dropped from the roll, but the reason for his request is not stated. J. D. 
Sykes, W. T. Love, Sr. and E. F. Aydlett, Sr. were appointed a committee 
to visit him and report to the Church. No report has been found and 
apparently they persuaded him to reconsider because our record and 
that of the Association shows that he remained a member until 1907. 

W. R. Haight and family were received by letter from Calvary 
Church, Portsmouth, Virginia on September 2, 1908. He came here to be 
pastor at Berea and our Church secured him to preach at the Parsonage 
Street Chapel, now the First Christian Church, for a while. While a 
member of our Church he lost a child and it was buried in Old Holly- 
wood cemetery in one half a lot given to the Church by the Cemetery 
Society. Someone a few years ago buried a body partly on that one half 
lot by mistake and when they discovered it a few years ago offered to 
buy the space, provided the body of the child could be moved. Pemiis- 
sion was secured from relatives now in Richmond, Virginia, Mr. George 
A. Twiddy agreed for the child to be moved to his lot and the space was 
sold. Mr. Haight and his family were granted letters to unite with the 
Belhaven Church on December 11, 1912 where he was to be pastor. 

J. B. Harrell. All the information we have is from the Association- 
al Minutes for the year 1893 which reports him as an ordained minister 
belonging to this Church. 

Dennis P. Harris. A native of Berea section of Pasquotank County 
and transferred here from that Church in 1900. He was secured to preach 
at the Riverside Chapel every Sunday night for two or three years. After 
leaving in 1905 he has held important pastorates in this State. 

A. HoUowell (Licentiate). This name appears in the Associational 
minutes of 1860 as a licentiate from this Church and so continued until 
1887. There is no record of his ordination. There could have been some 
error or he could have gone to some other Association and been ordain- 
ed. Anyway, he was a member of the Church at least during the above 
period and we give him the benefit of the doubt and list him. 

Oliver C. Horton. Born in Elizabeth City December 11, 1841. 
He was Superintendent of the Sunday School in 1873; and in 1873-74 he 

195 



was Treasurer of the Church. On December 27, 1873 the minutes show: 
"A letter was received from Shady Grove in Currituck County requesting 
this Church to call a council to examine and if found worthy ordain to 
the work of the ministry Brother O. C. Horton." There is no record to 
show when he was ordained but his ministry in this area was very effec- 
ti\'e including at Sawyer's Creek, Shady Grove, Ramoth Gilead, Shiloh 
and probably other churches. On January 24, 1880 he asked for a letter 
to unite with Sawyer's Creek, but his request was denied, not that any- 
thing was wrong, this Church simply did not want to lose him as a mem- 
ber. He pronounced the benediction at that session of conference. He 
was pastor at Sawyer's Creek and probably felt that his ministry would 
be more effective there if he held membership there, but he lived in 
Elizabeth City and he yielded to the wishes of this Church and remained 
a member for two more years, when he was granted a letter on January 
21, 1882 to unite with Shiloh. To further show the esteem in which this 
Church held Mr. Horton, the minutes of May 1, 1907 "It was brought 
to the attention of the Church that the grave of Brother O. C. Horton 
is being neglected and on motion Brethren F. F. Cohoon, E. F. Pritchard 
and W. N. Gregory are appointed a committee to have it put and kept 
in good order." He died March 17, 1900 and is buried in Old Hollysvood 
cemetery. 

Jennings. (Christian name unknown). Burkitt and Read, History 
of the Kehukee Association, 1803, say "There were two brethren in the 
ministry, viz: Smithson and Jennings . . . who used to exercise their gifts 
in public, but they never became very popular." Tliis terse statement is 
all the information we have. 

Pritchard Jordan. The only record we have is Associational min- 
utes which list him as an ordained minister of this Church from 1847 to 
1853. The 1854 minutes reveal that his pastor, G. W. Johnson, was ap- 
pointed to prepare a biographical sketch of his life. This is evidence that 
he had died during the past Associational year. Johnson very soon left 
this Church and the Association, without getting the sketch to the As- 
sociational Clerk for publication in the minutes. However, the Clerk 
added a note which he had rccei\ed from the Biblical Recorder saying 



196 



that if it would be sent in, it would be published therein. Copies of the 
Recorder for the next several weeks, now preserved in the Wake Forest 
College library, were checked but the sketch was never published. 
Neither was it published in tlie 1855 Associational minutes. 

William Curtis Lamb. Born in Elizabeth City, North Carolina 
May 20, 1928, tlie son of Joseph Lindsey Lamb, Sr.; baptized in Novem- 
ber, 1937 by Dr. E. H. Potts, Pastor of the First Church; and ordained 
to the gospel ministry on December 26, 1948 by a presbytery called by 
the First Church. Brother Lamb is a cum laude graduate of Wake Forest 
College and took his Masters degree in theology at the Soutliern Baptist 
Seminary in 1955. He was an Associate pastor at the First Church in 
Rocky Mount, North Carolina for 15 months and from there he went, on 
October 9, 1955, as pastor of the First Church in Cherryville, North Caro- 
lina where he still serves. 

Dr. J. F. Love. This Church is proud to claim Dr. Love as a na- 
tive son. He was appointed Deacon on March 21, 1885, licensed to exer- 
cise his preaching gifts on September 26, 1885 and the Church voted on 
August 27, 1887 to call a council for his ordination. The exact date of 
his ordination is not known. 

The following taken from Dr. Thomas J. Taylor's History of the 

Tar River Association published in 1921, should be of great interest to 

this Church: 

Dr. J. F. Love, now Corresponding Secretary of our Foreign Mission Eojrd, 
did his first work in the mission field of the Tar Ri\'er Association. In answer to the 
prayer of Mrs. S. B. Turner, of PamUco County, N. C, and her importunities through 
the Recorder, he turned from the consideration of a good all-time church to go into 
the mosquito swamps of Pamlico County in order to satify his missionary conscience 
and answer the prayers of one of the best women he ever knew. 

The hardship connected with his journey from Elizabeth City to the home 
of Mrs. Turner were trifling in comparison with those he endured on his mission 
field composed of the counties of Beaufort, Pamlico and Hyde. He was the only 
Baptist preacher in these three counties. His extreme appointments on the field were 
seventy-fi\e miles apart, and he did not miss an appointment during the more than 
three years of his work on that destitute field. He tra\'eled by day and by night, in 
sunshine and shower, in buggy and on horse-back, on ri\er craft and on foot. He 
preached in schoolhouses, farm houses, from wagons and on creek banks. It was a 
glorious ministry and no doubt a joyous one. It was doubtless this kind of ti-aining 
that fitted the great Secretary of Missions for his great work. 

197 



This mission field was not really a part of the Tar Ri\er Association, but 
that great layman, Noah Biggs, tied up the interest of Pamlico, Beaufort and Hyde 
with the Tar River by contributing to the support of the Missionary. His salary at 
first was $250.00, which was afterwards raised to $400.00. 

While on this field Dr. Lo\e built the Church at Bayboro with small contri- 
butions which he picked up over the State. He regularly attended the Tar River 
Association, and always received welcome, which warmed his heart for months after- 
wards, and encouraged him to continue his intenerating ministry. He says he always 
carried back from the Tar River cash to start the workmen anew on the Bayboro 
Church. 

After something more than three years spent in this mission field, he went 
to the First Church in Rocky Mount, and after a brief pastorate there accepted a 
call to the First Church in Baltimore. Since his Baltimore pastorate, his work has 
been Secretary of Mission Boards, and now he is fa\orably known and loved by tens 
of thousands of people for his work's sake, as a preacher, secretary and author. 

Dr. Love died in 1928 and the Moderator of the Chowan Associa- 
tion appointed a committee consisting of Revs. W. F. Cale, Sr., A. A. 
Butler, R. G. Kendrock and R. S. Monds to draw suitable resolutions in 
his behalf for publication in that years minutes. Following are the resolu- 
tions : 

Whereas, God has seen fit to take to Hiinself the immortal Spirit of Dr. J. F. 
Lo\'e - the much beloved and highly efficient Secretary of our Foreign Mission 
Board, and 

Whereas, Brother Love was born and reared in this Association, thereby be- 
ing our gift to the Kingdom of our Lord - a gift of which we are unspeakably proud 
because of his great and wonderful leadership and consecrated life; and 

Whereas, he so loved the work of the kingdom in general and the cause of 
Foreign Missions in particular, to which latter work he dedicated the best years of 
his strength and service, and so carried its burdens and so bore its discouragements 
as to bring himself to an untimely grave; and 

Whereas, in the going of our brother the whole kingdom work and in a very 
special sense, the cause of Foreign Missions, sustained the loss of a great leader and, 
all who knew and loved him, a choice friend. 

Therefore, be it Resolved: 

First: That while we mourn his departure, we meekly bow to the will of 
Him who doeth all things well. 

Second: That as a memorial to him and in recognition of the great service 
he rendered and through love for the cause in which he died, the Chowan Associa- 
tion hereby gives itself anew to the work of sending the gospel to the ends of the 
earth. 

We will pray God to speedily call to the place left xacant by Brother Love 
a worthy successor, that the blessed cause may not suffer too long, and when he 
comes we pledge to him our best support. 

Third: We hereby express our heartfelt sympathy for the family, tlie relatives 
and friends of our deceased brother as well as the Foreign Mission Board and the 
faithful missionaries all of whom loved him and so keenly feel their loss. 

198 



Fourth; That these resolutions be incorporated in our Minutes, that copies 
be sent to the family of our brother and to the Foreign Mission Board. 

A. J. McClelland. Mr. McClelland, a native of the State of Penn- 
sylvania, first came to Elizabeth City to be pastor of Methodist churches 
composing the Pasquotank County circuit. After serving this circuit 
three or four years he united with our Church on August 1, 1955; and 
having already been baptized by immersion was not re-baptized. After 
due process he was ordained to the Baptist ministry on June 17, 1956 
and was called to the pastorate of Yeopim and Burgess churches, where 
he still serves. He was granted a letter of dismission to unite with Yeopim 
Church. 

Alfred Norton (Licentiate). The only record we find is in the 1847 
Associational Minutes: "Elizabeth City recommends Brother Alfred Nor- 
ton for ordination, if it be expedient." Whether he was ever ordained or 
not we do not know - neither the Church or Associational minutes tell 
us. However, since the Church recommended him we give him the bene- 
fit of tlie doubt and list his name, as we have in the case of two or three 
others. 

Abner H. Outlaw. I was bom in Lenoir County, North Carolina 

on September 16, 1896 and was pas- 
tor of Free Will Baptist churches in 
Kinston, Morehead City, New Bern 
and Elizabeth City for twelve years 
before transferring to the Elizabeth 
City First Baptist Church on October 
22, 1930. The Chm-ch ordained me to 
the Baptist ministry on November 6, 
1930 and Dr. J. Samuel Johnson, Pas- 
tor of the mother Church, preached 
the ordination sermon. Being Super- 
intendent of the Pasquotank County 
Welfare Department for thirty-two 
years previous to retirement in 1958 
my ministry has been limited to part- 
time churches at the time including 
Coinjock, Moyock and Chappell's Hill 
199 




in the Chowan Association and Pleasant Grove at Hickory, Virginia. I 
am grateful to have had the opportunity to do extensive supply and in- 
terim preaching in the Chowan and nearby area. Other denominations 
have also often called upon me for these services. At a called conference 
on March 15, 1941 "The recommendation from the Board of Deacons 
that Reverend A. H. Outlaw be appointed as Assistant Pastor was adopt- 
ed." This was not an active position but I was grateful and happy to 
supply the pulpit and conduct prayer services many times in the absence 
of the pastors. This position was resigned in November, 1960. This is my 
twenty-fourtli year as Clerk of the Chowan Association. 

A. E. Owens. Mr. Owens served as Moderator at a number of 
business conferences before May 4, 1906 and on this date "On motion a 
committee was appointed to draft suitable resolutions on the death of 
Rev. A. E. Owens who passed away May 4, 1906. Committee: Noah 
Burfoot, Sr. and J. G. Gregory." This is all the information we have on 
him but it is sufficient to convince us tliat he was a member of this 
Church. 

R. W. Prevost. Came here as pastor of Corinth and B e r e a 
churches, although he rented a house and li\'ed in the city. It is presum- 
ed that he united with our Church in order to avoid any jealousy between 
the two churches he was to serve. He was Clerk of the Chowan Associa- 
tion one year. Mr. Prevost was received by letter on May 23, 1925 and 
WAS granted a letter to the Andrews Church in western North Carolina 
where he became pastor after being here four or five years. 

Don C. Pryor. Native of the State of Texas and came to the 
Chowan Association to be pastor at Salem. In 1958 he resigned the pas- 
torate and became Promotional Secretary of the Association, which posi- 
tion he still holds. He united with our Church in 1958. 

Lemuel Sanderlin. The Associational minutes show him a mem- 
ber of this Church for the years 1848-1851. Following is his obituary 
notice appearing in the Associational minutes of 1852: 

Born in Camden County December, 1794. Orphaned at four and reared by 
his uncle. He recei\ed what might be termed a hberal English education. 

200 



At age 20 (1814), he married Miss Elizabeth Slack of his native County, 
who, as well as himself, had a good estate but by bad management and prodigality, 
in three years time they were entirely destitute, and with an increasing family. In 
this condition he moved to Murfreesboro, Tennessee, and engaged in teaching an 
English school for a living, which business he followed nearly his whole life after- 
wards. He united with the Methodist Society and soon became a "Local preacher." 

In 1842 he visited his native County and was baptized at Sawyer's Creek 
April, 1842, returned to Tennessee for about two years and moved his family back 
to Camden County to spend the remainder of his life. He was ordained to the Bap- 
tist ministry at the Association in May, 1844. He became a great opponent of the 
doctrine of Campbellism. 

Elder Sanderlin was pastor at different times during his ministry of the 
churches at Elizabeth City, Shiloh, Providence, and Shady Grove. Also, at North 
West, Virginia, besides labors bestowed on other churches in the Chowan Associa- 
tion. 

He was twice married. Second marriage to Miss Mary Ann Whitehurst. 
Nine children by his fii^st wife and several by his second. 

The authors of the obituary are unknown, but they were in error 
regarding Sanderhn at one time being pastor of this Church. The As- 
sociational minutes make it very clear that C. R. Hendrickson was pastor 
here during the years that Sanderhn was a member here. He may have 
engaged in some supply or brief interim preaching here at sometime 
which the authors confused with being pastor. 

Edwiii F. Sawyer. Recei\'ed in the Church from the Methodists 
on March 11, 1908; examined and ordained to the Baptist Ministry the 
same day. It does not appear that he was ever an active pastor. He soon 
transferred to Blackwell Memorial where he remained until his death 
a few years ago. He is buried in Old Hollywood cemetery. Brother Saw- 
yer performed more marriage ceremonies than perhaps any other minister 
in Elizabeth City and became somewhat famous as the beloved marrying 
parson. 

Jesse Sawyer. On January 6, 1866 the Church granted him license 
to preach. No further record is found of him. He could have moved 
away and was ordained in some other Association. Or, he may have 
abandoned the idea. But, we give him the benefit of the doubt and list 
him here. 



201 



Sen telle. On February' 11, 1906 a motion was passed to grant 
"Brother Sentelle license to preach." No further record is found of him, 
either in the Church minutes or the Association. 

John A. Shaw. 1830 Associational minutes report him in the list 
of ordained ministers from this Church. Nothing more is seen of him un- 
til 1903-1904 minutes which report him again - these years as J. A. Shaw, 
presumably the same person. However, if it is the same person he would 
have been a very young preacher in 1830 and passed his three score 
years and ten in 1903. 

Harold A. Shoulders. Mr. Shoulders was a Navy Chaplain station- 
ed at the local base and was a member here from October 2, 1955 to 
October 16, 1957 when the Navy transferred him to the Norfolk area and 
he was granted a letter of dismission to unite with one of the churches 
over there. 

Quinton Trotman Simpson. Our first Church record of Elder 
Simpson is in December, 1866 as a private schoolteacher when he was 
granted the use of the benches from the schoolroom of the parsonage; 
and the next year, August 31, 1867, he was "granted a letter of dismission 
and a license to preach, as he desired to enter college." After college he 
evidently returned, as the Associational minutes for the year 1872 and 
1873, also 1876 and 1877 report him as an ordained minister belonging 
to this Church. Also, the Church record for July 6, 1873 shows he was 
granted another letter of dismission, but does not state where he was 
going. His neice, Mrs. Harold S. Overman, states that he was bom Jan- 
uary 14, 1847 in Pasquotank County, the son of Robert and Eliza Simp- 
son. He married (1) Sophie Corbett, (2) Jane Salina Green (of French 
descent). She was organist at one of the churches in Norfolk, Virginia 
where he was pastor and they later moved to Houston, Texas where he 
became pastor of a Baptist Church. To tliem was born several children, 
two of whom are Quinton, Jr. and Mrs. Evelyn McClendon, still living 
in Houston, Texas. Mr. Simpson died in 1900 and is buried in Houston. 
The two aboxe named children in 1954 gave the Church a brass altar 
vase as a memorial to their father. 



202 



W. W. Sisk. Mr. Sisk came to be pastor at Corinth but they hav- 
ing no parsonage he Hved in the City and became a member of our 
Church. He was here only a year or two and was granted a letter of dis- 
mission to Clio, South Carolina on December 11, 1912. Resolutions of 
esteem and regret at seeing him and his wife leaving were passed. 

Smithson. Burkitt and Read, History of tlie Kehukee Association, 
1803 say "there were two brethren in the ministry, viz: Smithson and 
Jennings . . . who used to exercise their gifts in public, but tiiey never 
became popular." The historians do not give first names and the above 
quotation is all the information we have on them. 

Alexander Speight, presided at a business conference on August 
22, 1885, during the pastorate of George Baker. We are not sure whether 
he was a local minister or a visiting supply during a vacation or absence 
of the pastor. 

Joe Paul Spence. Mr. Spence was ordained on June 23, 1896 by 
the Woodville Church where he was at the time a member. His ordina- 
tion took place "after being duly examined by Brethren Blackwell (Dr. 
C. S.), Elliott (Josiah), Wood and Graves, all ordained ministers; and 
Deacons B. F. Bray and W. A. Bogue, as to his fitness to become a gospel 
minister." Just when he transferred from Woodville to this Church we 
do not know. The Associational minutes first report him here in the year 
1899 and on February 4, 1900 he was granted a letter of dismission to a 
church in Norfolk, Virginia. Mr. Spence was an educator and became 
Assistant Supervisor of Schools in the City of Norfolk; Superintendent in 
Elberton, Georgia; thence to Orlando, Florida where he was also Super- 
intendent. 

T. A. Tatem. Little is known of him, although it is a local name. 
On April 26, 1908 he presided at a business conference of the Church 
and the Association reported him that year as being an ordained minister 
belonging to this Church. This conference was beUveen the pastorates 
of J. F. Vines and E. W. Stone. Tatem probably supplied the pulpit and 
presided at a conference following the service. 

A. Twine. Nothing is known of Mr. Twine except that his name 
appears in the Associational minutes for the years 1851-53 as an ordained 
minister from the Church. 

203 



Erwin W. West. The churches of Berea and Corinth on Novem- 
ber 27, 1904 requested "a presbytery to examine Brother West with the 
view of his ordination." Although we do not have tlie record or date of 
his ordination we are certain it did occur because he was pastor a short 
time at Ramoth Gilead. It was proposed on February 5, 1905 that the 
First Church ask him to preach and hold prayer meetings at Riverside 
Chapel at $20.00 a month temporarily, but the matter was tabled and 
as far as we know he was never employed. Brother West was an unfort- 
unate opium addict. On June 11, 1905 " a committee was appointed to 
look into his conduct with authority to cite him to the next conference 
if, in their judgement there were grounds for action." The committee re- 
ported on July 2, 1905 that they had "written him but had no reply." 
However, the pastor stated that he had "received a letter from him 
begging the fellowship of the Church be not withdrawn from him," but 
making no suggestions he will meet the obligation he incurred "on 
motion the fellowship . . . withdrawn for use of opium and dishonesty 
and the Clerk is directed to notify him and send a warning to the Bib- 
lical Recorder." 

Oscar Williams. Born in Elizabeth City the son of Samuel E. 
Williams. Became a member of the Church at an early age. Brother 
Williams was somewhat late in entering the ministry, being ordained in 
1945. He was pastor of Baptist churches in North Carolina, Virginia and 
Florida until 1957 when he joined the North Carolina Methodist Confer- 
ence and was assigned to the Church in Belhaven. He is now pastor at 
Moyock Methodist Church in Currituck County. 

E. G. Willis. A Carteret County native who first came to the 
Chowan Association as pastor at Sawyer's Creek, Providence and Moyock 
in June, 1942. In January, 1943 he was commissioned to the chaplaincy 
in the United States Army. Upon his return he became pastor of other 
churches in the Association and then in the West Chowan Association. 
After becoming inactive as a pastor, having residence in Elizabeth City, 
he united with this Church in 1956 and remained only three years, witli- 
drawing in 1959. 



204 



CHAPTER XXIV 

Singing and Music 

Acapella Singing and Hymn Books 

It is said that before musical instruments were introduced in 
churches the minister or song leader was the only one who used a hymn 
book. He would read a line from the book, give the pitch and then 
all sang together in whatever unison resulted from everybody's memory 
of the tune. Then the leader would read the second line, etc. 

First mention in the record of a hymn book was on November 26, 
1869 when Mrs. R. R. Overby, wife of the pastor, was extended a vote 
of thanks for a hymn book presented to the Church. It seems significant 
that it was only one hymn book - that if books were in use by all the 
congregation at that time she would have presented more than one. 
Nothing further is recorded until April 24, 1880 when a resolution by 
Dr. R. R. Speed, a physician, was adopted "to purchase fifty or a hundred 
song books for the constant use by this Church." Dr. Speed, F. F. Cohoon, 
James F. Snell and M. R. Casey and sisters Nettie Murden, Ida Bland, 
Martha Ives and Virginia Weatherly were appointed to raise the funds 
and purchase the books. No mention is made of them replacing old, worn 
out books or of them being additional to other books already in use. 
Therefore, in all probability this was the initiation of congregational use 
of hymn books; although, there is evidence of a choir long before this 
time. 

On July 7, 1889 the pastor, C. A. G. Thomas, was extended a vote 
of thanks for the hymn books he presented to the Church and on Decem- 
ber 6, 1894 "it was stated that the choir needed anthem books and it 
was directed that the same be gotten." February 5, 1905 "The deacons 
recommend . . . that we adopt the Baptist Praise Book for our Church 
music - cost. One Dollar for one copy of the music edition, with three 
copies without music, gratis. Adopted, and on motion the committee is 
requested to secure as many subscriptions for the music edition as pos- 
sible and order the books at once." 



205 



Musical Instruments 

The Tuning Fork. Although there is no record to prove it, it is 
very probable the very first thing that might be called a musical instru- 
ment in the Church was the tuning fork, a metalic instrument with 
prongs, which when rapped or struck, vibrated regularly, giving a tone 
of a certain pitch. Before organs and pianos came into vogue many 
singing masters used this little tuning fork. However, that one was ever 
used in our Church is purely assumption. 

Violin. In the introduction of the violin in our Church lies a 
unique romance related by Mrs. H. D. Walker, our second door neighbor 
to the east, and a granddaughter of one of the leading characters, Mary 
Harney, who sang in the choir. After an evening service sixteen year old 
Mary, descending from the choir loft then located in the balcony and 
the exit through the vestibule some time in the 1850's, stumbled and 
fell from one of the lower steps into the arms of young Robert Holmes, a 
visitor and total stranger from Suffolk, Virginia. An unusual way for a 
courtship to begin, we would say, but the acquaintance grew rapidly 
into courtship, love and marriage before Mary was seventeen years of 
age. In fourteen years seven children were born to them. Then he died 
and left Mary to rear the children and sing in the choir when she could. 

Mary Harney and her cousin, Melia White, teenagers in the 1850's 
walked out of the choir when someone played the "fiddle" but returned 
when it was not in use. Mary Harney Holmes was still there in 1884 
when the proposal was made to purchase the first organ. She was still 
a conscientious objector to musical instruments in the Church, believing 
tliat one should worship God only with the human voice. However, she 
became reconciled to it and the few who still remember her say she was 
a faithful member of the Church choir. 

There is no record of any further \'iolin music in the Church until 
Sunday, September 23, 1928. The bulletin shows that Miss Bertha Eliz- 
abeth Thalley rendered a violin solo. Most of us who were here some 
twenty years ago remember Robert Rhodes who frequently rendered 
violin music in the worship services to the delight and inspiration of all 
of us. 

206 



Mel ode on. On October 23, 1858 "Moved and carried use of the 
melodeon be removed from the quire." "On motion the quire be con- 
tinued." The melodeon was a small reed organ in which a suction bel- 
lows drew air inward through reeds. It is not stated whether the melod- 
eon was worn out, out of repair or just plain objected to, but in all prob- 
ability the latter is correct because even twenty-five years later when 
the first organ was purchased, there was some objection to that. Previous- 
ly, many people looked upon the organ perhaps as did their Puritan 
forebears, as the Devil's bagpipes. 

The First Organ. After the violin and melodeon incidents in the 
1850's no further record is found of a musical instrument in the Church 
until March 26, 1884 when J. F. Jones, C. R. Jones, J. F. Love, Ida Bland 
and Margaret Shannon were constituted a committee "with discretionary 
power to purchase an organ within the price of $200.00," and on the 
following May 24 the pastor, George W. Baker, reported $53.50 raised 
by the "Feast" to aid in the purchase of the organ. No i-eference is made 
to an old organ being replaced and it is believed that this was the very 
fii"st organ purchased by the Church and permitted to remain in it for 
use in all the sei-vices; pumped by foot and from the price paid we would 
judge it to have been a first class reed organ for that day and time. 

It was purchased in the summer of that year as is indicated by 
the minutes of August 23, 1884 "J. F. Love, Wm. A. Holmes, Jennie 
Weatherly, Ida Bland and Margaret Shannon appointed to hold a feast 
next Superior Court week (Court week must have been a big show and 
drew the largest crowds in those days) to raise funds to finish paying 
for the organ." This organ was first in the balcony of the preceding 
sanctuary and then in the northeast corner of the present sanctuary 
where was also the choir. In the present sanctuary they were on a slight- 
ly elevated platform and the choir entered from a small room to the 
north. The organ and choir remained in this location until 1896 when the 
present organ was purchased and installed in the alcove back of the 
present arch. 

Within a few years these reed organs began to be replaced in 



207 



many of the churches by pianos, especially in the rural and small city 
churches and are still in use in many of them. Our Church, however, 
although we have eleven pianos in the various other departments, have 
chosen to keep organ music for the worship services in the sanctuary. 

The Present Pipe Organ. First reference to the pipe organ was 
on June 12, 1895 when a committee composed of G. W. Ward, J. D. 
Sykes, W. T. Love, Sr., F. F. Cohoon and E. F. Aydlett, Sr. and the dea- 
cons were appointed "to look into the matter of buying an organ - kind, 
size, price, etc." and on July 7 the committee "reported $1900.00 had been 
pledged." The following December 1st it appears that although there 
was not enough money and pledges in hand, another committee: "E. F. 
Aydlett, W. T. Love, Sr., G. D. B. Pritchard, G. W. Ward, and W. H. 
Weatherly were appointed to purchase a pipe organ to cost about 
$2500.00. The organ was not purchased, however, until some time after 
May 3, 1896 because on that date we find the following entry: "On recom- 
mendation of the deacons it is ordered that the baptistry be thoroughly 
repaired when it is moved to make place for the organ." The baptistry 
was to be moved from the back somewhat to the front and at a lower 
level. Actually, under the new choir loft to make room for the pipe or- 
gan. At first there was a wood railing separating the choir and organ 
from the pulpit but on March 4, 1908 "W. T. Love, Sr., and J. R. Pinner 
were appointed with the Ladies Aid Society to remove it and place a 
brass rail and curtain there instead." 

This fine old organ has a long and interesting history. At first it 
was pumped by hand and the deacons on July 5, 1896 "recommended 
to pay $3.00 a month for pumping the organ and George Bright was 
elected to do the work." George A. Twiddy in an interview thought he 
was the first but being informed of this record conceded the distinction 
to Bright. Twiddy was probably the second to "do the work." The Re\'. 
Herman Trueblood, partly raised in this Church, supplying the pulpit 
one Sunday some five or six years ago, reminisced upon the old organ 
and stated that he also once held the job of pumping it when he was a 
boy. Subsequently, however, the duty was placed upon the janitor. Febr- 
uary 3, 1909 "that the janitor be paid ten cents an hour for time in pump- 

208 



ing the organ, over and above that for regular services - it being found 
that three extra practices a week were needed. 

Progress moved forward and on December 11, 1912 Mrs. W. R. 
Haight, the wife of a minister holding membership with the Church, 
urged the Church to purchase a motor for the organ which was soon 
done. The Ladies Aid Society on April 29, 1913 agreed to collect money 
to pay for it. The tone of this organ has been so sweet and good that the 
Church has consistently refused through the years to replace it, choosing 
rather to have extensive repairs made from time to time and keep it in use. 

In 1921 it was learned that the organ was in such close proximity 
to the Baptistry that it was severely damaged by dampness. Therefore, 
on February 27, 1921 we find the following recommendations from the 
deacons which were adopted: "That steps be taken to remove the bap- 
tistry from under the organ, that the choir loft be removed and other 
changes made to put the organ in first class condition and at the same 
time add some stops with an echo and thus bring the organ up to modern 
standards, which it is felt the instrument justifies." However, the re- 
moval of the baptistry to protect the organ was not accomplished until 
some time after July 31 of that year when another committee on heating 
plant, baptistry, etc. reported that "the proper disposition of the heating 
plant will require that the pit be enlarged so as to take in the space now 
occupied by the baptistry, thus necessitating . . . the removal and con- 
struction of a new baptistry and was authorized to proceed according 
to their best judgement." Thus, the baptistry was moved forward and 
concealed under the pulpit rostrum. 

September 5, 1928 "Recommended that the following improve- 
ments be made: New choir loft, baptistry, pulpit platform, putting the 
organ back in the arch (That is almost directly under it instead of back 
in the alcove), doing away with the pipes and using grill work (Instead) 
at an estimated cost of $3,218.00. Adopted." This arrangement was for 
a more spacious pulpit rostrum, extending a great deal forward from the 
arch and reached by steps on each side. The organ being moved as 
described, was put in a pit so low that the organist could not be seen by 



209 



the congregation except when descending into it and ascending from it. 
She faced and could see the choir, however. With this arrangement the 
choir began wearing vestments for the first time and continues to do so. 
At first this innovation was not pleasing to everybody, not even all of 
the choir members, but today it is fully accepted. Also, the congregation 
is pleased with our last two pastors' use of vestment and stole during 
the more formal services, and feels that it adds dignity and reverence 
to the worship services. 

The accompanying picture (next page) is of the above described re- 
modeling including the baptistry inclosure, the pulpit rostrum, etc. as well 
as the choir loft. Miss Emerald Sykes, organist, cannot be seen, being in 
the pit mentioned above behind the minister's middle chair. Last but not 
least, included in the picture is Mrs. Frank Stilwell, Minister of Music, 
and her youth choir who were State winners at Caswell Baptist Assembly 
Hymn Festival in July, 1952, the year the picture was taken. 

Once again, in 1954 this organ and choir loft was changed. The 
chancel was deepened and divided and the organ console was moved to 
the north end of the west section of the choir. This time the organ was 
completely rebuilt at a cost of $10,508.37. Following is a news item with 
a touch of humor, but we are thankful it does not announce serious 
damage, appearing in the Daily Advance in December, 1960 - modern 
history: 

"The First Baptist Church on West Main Street, was the scene 
of some hot music Monday at 4:47 o'clock. Wlien firemen arrived to 
bring the situation under control, they found the situation had corrected 
itself. According to fire department records a short circuit in the Church 
organ caused little damage and was out when they arrived." 

Organists 

We do not know the name of the Violinist (Fiddler) so strenuously 
objected to in the 1850's, nor the Melodeonist whose instrument was 
"moved and carried ... be removed from the choir," but we are reason- 



210 




211 



ably certain of the names of all of our Organists, once the Church decid- 
ed upon organ music in the worship ser\'ices. 

Mrs. Estelle Wright remembers that Mrs. Eliza Jane Thompson 
was our first Organist, 1884. She was the mother of the late Judge 
Everett C. Thompson and, being a widow, married the late Judge George 
W. Ward. 

Next was Mrs. E. F. Aydlett, Sr. Just when Mrs. Aydlett was 
elected to succeed \hs. Thompson the record does not reveal. First refer- 
ence to her election was on Januar\' 7, 1906 and on January 6, 1907 she 
was re-elected but declined to accept the position. However, the fol- 
lowing resolutions taken from the minutes of February 6, 1907 indicates 
clearly that she had served a number of years: 

"We, your committee appointed by the deacons to submit a re- 
port in reference to the ser\ices of Mrs. E. F. Aydlett as Organist of the 
First Baptist Church, beg leave to report as follows: That we highly ap- 
preciate her long, faithful and efficient services in this capacity and 
realize that she has made many sacrifices both of her time and personal 
con\'enience in order to sustain this important part of the public worship 
of the Church. We therefore, recommend that a vote of thanks be ex- 
tended to her for this great service which she has rendered to the Church 
for the good of the cause and the glory of God. 

John F. Vines 

J. G. Gregory, Committee 

Mrs. I. M. Meekins being first assistant to Mrs. Aydlett became 
Organist on January 6, 1907 and was in that capacity until 1929 when 
she was succeeded by Miss Emerald Sykes who began at a salary of 
$30.00 per month. Miss Emerald still serves efficiently and well. 

Ministers of Music 

Although she was generally thought of as Organist and actually 
elected to that position, Mrs. Meekins also served in the capacity of 
Choir Director, at least part of the time. Dr. Samuel H. Templeman's 
Church Annual for the year 1924 lists her as Organist and Choir Director. 



213 



However church minutes for January 4, 1920 speak of Mrs. Fred Simons 
being appointed as Choir Director, first reference to a special Choir 
Director. 

On November 13, 1927 Mrs. J. H. (Mary) Cartwright was elected 
at a salary of $30.00 per month. She served for three years. 

1930 - September 5, 1943 Miss Ethel Jones. Then Mrs. E. H. Potts, 
the pastor's wife, served for a few weeks until another could be employed. 

1943 - 1945 Miss Zelma Parnell, during which time she became 
Mrs. W. H. Gossard. She also served in the capacity of Educational Di- 
rector. Salary, $125.00 per month. 

June, 1945 - 1956 Miss Martha Ellen Barr. She also was married 
during her tenure of office - to Mr. Frank Stilwell. She too, served as 
Educational Director until 1948 when she was relieved of that part of 
her duties by the employment of Miss Vivian Kerbaugh, leaving her to 
full time Minister of Music. 

1956 - 1957 Rev. Dowd Davis. Romances did abound! During his 
tenure of office he married the Educational Director, Miss Shirley 
McLean. 

1957 for a short time Rev. Richmond Hogan. Mr. Hogan also had 
the duties of Educational Director. He had a relapse of a fornier illness 
and went back to his home. 

June, 1958 - December, 1958 Miss Joyce Stillman. Got married. 

January 15, 1959 - December, 1959 Miss Adair Whisenhunt. 
Another wedding. 

January, 1960 Miss Linda Swann who married William L. Win- 
slow on April 9, 1961 and continues to serve. The work of these Ministers 
of Music has been most effective both in the performance of the Chancel 
Choir and in the training of young people from the Cherub Choir up. 

Music Committee 

The first recorded Music Committee was on March 3, 1906: "That 

214 



a Music Committee be appointed as advisory to the Organist and serving 
choir members and all matters pertaining to church music and organ. 
Committee: Dr. S. W. Gregory (Dentist), R. T. Venters and E. M. 
Stevens." On January 6, 1907 Dr. Gregory, J. W. Stevens and J. W. Mod- 
lin were elected but three days later Modlin resigned and L. E. Skinner 
was elected. 

On December 8, 1909 "the committee was abolished and the 
choir was instructed to apply to the deacons for music or advice." How- 
ever, now for a number of years the Church has had a Music Committee 
and the present committee consists of Ray Jones, Jr., Gaither Aydlett, 
Mrs. R. W. Long and Mrs. Lyndon Parker. 

In conclusion, ours is a volunteer choir. No one is paid but the 
Organist and the Minister of Music. The whole congregation might well 
"sing the praises" of these faithful and gifted people for the services 
they render so well and to which they are fully dedicated. 

The accompanying picture was made Christmas, 1954, upon com- 
pletion of the divided chancel. It includes all of the choirs. Pastor W. W. 
Finlator at the reader's left and at the right, reading from left to right 
are Miss Sykes and Mrs. Stilwell, Organist and Minister of Music, re- 
spectively. 



215 




216 



CHAPTER XXV 
The Ladies Aid Society 

Mrs. Clate (J. H.) Aydlett remembers that the Ladies Aid Society 
was organized around 1888 by her mother, Mrs. Corneha (Trim S.) White, 
and Mrs. White was the first President. This date is substantiated by the 
fact that the first reference in the Church minutes to the Society was 
on June 6, 1888 "The Ladies of this Church (In all probability the Ladies 
Aid Society) have permission to hold a feast or festival for the benefit of 
this Church." This could have been the initial effort on the part of those 
newly organized ladies to raise money as a Society. Mrs. Aydlett re- 
members as a little girl going "around with her mother to collect money 
for the Society and the Church." 

The earliest minutes we have of the Society's meetings are dated 
November 27, 1910. Mrs. W. R. Haight, the wife of a local minister - not 
our pastor - was President. At that meeting Mrs. J. L. Pritchard, now 
Mrs. M. G. Wright, was elected for the ensuing year. Other Presidents 
were: 

1912-15 Mrs. J. H. White. 

1916 - 17 Mrs. George Whitehurst. Here the Secretary's book is 
filled and the next book has not been found. How much longer, if any, 
Mrs. Whitehurst served we cannot say. Miss Marie LeRoy believes that 
Mrs. Charles Reid served as President for some years between 1917 and 
1924. 

1924. Dr. S. H. Templeman's Church annual gives the name of 
Mrs. S. G. Scott as President for that jear. We have no more record 
until 1927. 

1927. Dr. Templeman's Weekly Calendar gives the name of Mrs. 
D. Ray Kramer as President. Mrs. Kramer remembers serving for some 
time, but cannot be sure how many years. She probably served five or 
six years, but there is no more record until 1933. 

1933 Mrs. D. M. Love. 

217 



1934 - 36 Mrs. W. C. Jackson, the last President. 

Many hours of senice were given and an untold amount of money 
raised and good done by these faithful Christian ladies who, up to 1936 
when they disbanded were conscientious in tlieir methods of raising 
money to promote the Lord's work. However, Dr. E. H. Potts, their 
pastor in 1936 was able to convince them that it was better to educate 
the people to give through a unified Church budget rather than patro- 
nize their festivals, bazars, etc. to raise money. 

Among the many worthy deeds that the Society took upon itself 
voluntarily and that it was called upon to do we list a few of which we 
have record: 

October 7, 1900 the Church in conference extended "a vote of 
thanks to the Ladies Aid Society for the beautiful collection plates which 
tiiey have given us." 

December 30, 1900 "Ladies Aid Society asked to look after ar- 
ranging the parsonage." 

February 7, 1904 "Ladies Aid Societ>' asked to take into hand the 
fencing of the cemetery." 

June 27, 1906 "Ladies Aid Society inquired if they may procure 
an individual communion set for the use of the Church and sell what- 
ever of the present set will not be needed, and on motion they were 
authorized to do so." 

November 7, 1906 "Ladies report that the money is in hand to 
purchase the individual communion set." The record indicates that the 
Society had a rotating committee on communion services, to make neces- 
sary preparations for each serv'ice and to "clean up after them." 

February 26, 1908 "J. R. Pinner and W. T. Love, Sr. appointed 
with the Ladies Aid Society in regard to change in choir loft." 

February 2, 1910 "Ladies (Presumably, Aid Society) given full 
authority to select and buy carpet which they found for seventy cents 
a yard, laid." 



218 



February 1, 1911 "Ladies given full authority to solicit funds to 
erect new steps and make other repairs." These are the present stone 
steps on the front and east entrances of the sanctuary, erected in May 
of tliat year. 

We turn now to some notations found in the Secretar)'s book: 

November 27, 1911 The Charity Committee reported $29.80 and 
200 garments given to the poor during the year. The Society voted to 
pay for repairs to the vestibule. 

April 3, 1912 voted to purchase tracking for the floors. 

October 29, 1912 voted to make certain repairs to the parsonage 
and assume responsibility for a reception for the new pastor. 

January 28, 1913 agreed to assume the debt of plumbing in the 
new parsonage and in August of that year bought the electric fixtures 
for the parsonage. 

On February 25, 1913 the Society agreed to assist the pastor in a 
religious census and to buy a cookstove for the parsonage. 

March 25, 1913. Visiting Committee reported 127 visits made 
to the sick and to strangers. Agreed to have windows in the belfry cover- 
ed with paper to resemble stained glass. The next monthly meeting, 
April 29, 1913, agreed to collect money to pay for an organ motor. 

January 26, 1914 plans were made to provide book and commun- 
ion cup racks for the pews. 

On March 30, 1914 the Society agreed to repair the carpet in the 
Sunday School room. It was announced that the Church had requested 
the Society to have the parsonage cleaned and put in repair. The ladies 
gladly obliged. 

March 27, 1916. Agreed to raise $50.00 a month for ten months 
at the request of Dr. B. C. Henning, Pastor, to pay the indebtedness on 
the parsonage. It was also agreed at this meeting to purchase 50 new 
hymn books and five dozen glasses for the communion set for the Church. 



219 



November 28, 1916 arranged to repair the curtain in front of the 
choir. 

February, 1933 voted to pay $100.00 on interest due on the Ed- 
ucational Building debt. Also, to purchase dishes for the kitchen. 

July 30, 1934. At the request of the Church agreed to supervise 
the janitor. 

February 25, 1935 to purchase and install a new gas range for 
the parsonage, furnish flowers for the worship services and purchase 
floor oil. 

In additions to festivals, bazars, etc. the Society employed many 
other methods of raising honest money for the Church. To mention just 
a few: Arranging lectures by noted speakers and selling tickets. Divided 
into two groups, the "Look Ups" and the "Look Afters" and, whichever 
group raised the most money in a given time was to be given a party 
by the losers. Boat and train excursions. Collecting soap wrappers for 
which they could get $5.00 a thousand. Saving of surplus coat hangers 
for sale. On January 1, 1934 Mrs. Jackson, the President, stated that the 
Church wanted the Society to raise $1000.00 that year. The Society was 
divided into different groups and each given specific assignments. The 
record does not state whether they raised the amount or not. Our guess 
is: they did. Father-Son banquets. On December 31, 1934 the Society 
voted to buy a six-year $1000.00 Building and Loan stock to be paid in 
$10.00 monthly installments. This was later changed to $5.00 installments 
to mature in three and a half years. 

This devoted service to the Lord was as it is represented in the 
Preamble and Article eleven of the Society's constitution adopted on 
November 30, 1910: 

The Preamble: We, women members of the First Baptist Church, being 
desirous of bringing together the members of the congregation in closer ties of love 
and friendship; to aid the Pastor in his efforts to reach the people by spreading the 
influence of this brotherly relationship; and being anxious that in our midst and 
within our reach not one of His creatures shall want for the actual needs of this 
life; and wishing to raise money, in our small way, to help maintain our place for 
religious services and the further worship of God, do therefore adopt the following 
constitution . . . 

220 



Article II. Object: Its object shall be three-fold, (1) to cultivate the social 
life of the Church, (2) to help the poor of the Church and congregation, (3) to raise 
money to be spent for the care and keeping of the Church property, and for such 
worthy objects as the Society may deem wise. 

Disbanding: When the Society disbanded it had 83 members. 
At the October 28, 1935 meeting the following notation is taken from the 
minutes: "Tlie President (Mrs. W. C. Jackson) said it had been suggested 
the Aid Society merge with the Woman's Missionary Society. She asked 
the ladies to give it their careful consideration." At the last two meetings 
of tlie Society the following decisions were made: 

November 25, 1935. "The question of merging the Aid Society with the 
Woman's Missionary Society, which was left open from the previous month for the 
ladies' careful consideration, was brought up and after a thorough discussion it was 
mo\ed, seconded and unanimously \'oted to merge the Ladies Aid Society with the 
Woman's Missionary Society." 

February 24, 1936. "In reference to the Aid Society merging with the 
Woman's Missionary Society, the Ladies Aid Society met with the Woman's Mis- 
sionary Society on December 2, 1935 and the President, Mrs. W. C. Jackson, pre- 
sented the request to the Woman's Missionary Society. A discussion followed, as the 
Aid is a money-making Society, and it is not Biblical for the Woman's Missionary 
Society to make money, the President, Mrs. I. A. Ward, the Pastor, Dr. E. H. Potts, 
and the Society as a whole (Missionary Society) objected to the merging of the tvvo 
Societies. The new business of the above date was then taken up. It was suggested 
that the Aid Society disband. This was thoroughly discussed. At this time prayer 
was offered by Mrs. J. L. Pritchard that the Lord would guide us aright in this 
movement. It was then moved, seconded and unanimously voted to disband the 
Ladies Aid Society. It was also voted to take care of the $500.00 Building and Loan 
stock imtil the expiration of its maturity." 



221 



CHAPTER XXVI 

Woman's Missionary Society 

The Woman's Missionary Society is another organization that, 
according to the evidence was organized and going strong for some time 
before the Southern Baptist Convention set up a southwide program in 
1888. Mrs. Clate Aydlett states that she remembers the Ladies Aid So- 
ciety being organized around 1888 and that the Woman's Missionary 
Society was organized long before that. However, we know nothing of 
its officers nor activities in those early days of its existance. We do have 
reason to believe that when the State and Southwide programs were or- 
ganized the Society in this Church was in perfect accord and have 
through the years co-operated to make the work of powerful effect that 
it is today. 

The earliest actual record of the Society's existance is the appoint- 
ment of Mrs. T. S. White, Miss Lilly Grandy and Miss Florence Bell as 
a committee to draw up suitable resolutions of respect to a former mem- 
ber, Mrs. Virginia (Affectionately known as Jennie) Weatherly, who was 
buried on January 15, 1896. If those resolutions could have been found 
tliey might have revealed that she had been President. 

Ten years later, and this is the next actual record that we have, 
this Church and its Woman's Missionary Society had a prominent part 
in the organization of the Associational Woman's Missionary Union. The 
Chowan Association was in session at Rocky Hock Church on May 22-24, 
1906. On the second day it was "ordered that hereafter one hour during 
the sessions of the Association shall be yielded to the work of the 
Women and that a Standing Committee be appointed to make a report 
upon their work and that space be allowed in the Minutes for this work." 

The organizational meeting was held at the stand and did not 
interrupt the Association's proceedings except to draw the interested 
women and a few interested or curious men from the Church Auditorium. 
Dr. John F. Vines, our pastor, was present and made an address on "The 
Power of Woman's Influence." Mrs. Vines addressed the meeting on 



"Young Ladies' Mission Clubs." Mrs. Vines had called the meeting to 
order and was elected its first Superintendent. This title was maintained 
until recently it was changed to President. Another of our members, Miss 
Cora White, still a faithful member of our Society, was elected Secretary- 
Treasurer. Soon after, she became Mrs. George A. Twiddy. 

At that first meeting the Society of this Church reported a Young 
Ladies Society (Now Young Woman's Auxiliary) and a Sunbeam Band. 
Total enrollment for the Society and its auxiliaries was 45 and a total of 
$138.20 had been raised for all causes. Since then the Society has added 
the Royal Ambassadors auxiliary for boys and the Girl's Auxiliary. Fol- 
lowing is a progress report with a check of from five to ten year inter- 
vals showing what information could be gleaned from the Associational 
minutes: 

1912 one Y. W. A., one Sunbeam Band; contributions, $377.70. 

1917 one Y. W. A., one Sunbeam Band, contributions, $267.63. 

1926 one Y. W. A., one G. A., one R. A. and one Sunbeam Band; 
contributions $1,341.31. The first Mission Study Course was opened on 
January 18, 1926 and, as did other Societies in the Association having 
Study Courses, reported its number enrolled which was 75. The book 
studied was Prayer and Missions by Helen E. Montgomery. Mrs. E. F. 
Aydlett, Sr., notes that Mrs. J. H. Ballard (Affectionately known as 
Eugenie) was Literature Chairman and that whatever job she had, she 
was a perfectionist. This, of course meant that the Study Course was an 
outstanding success. 

1930 one Y. W. A., two G. A.'s and one Sunbeam Band. Contri- 
butions $1,704.86. The Study Courses in the Association, if any, were 
not given in the minutes. However, this year the Society is recorded as 
having achieved the Standard of Excellence. 

1935 one Y. W. A., one G. A., one R. A. and one Sunbeam Band. 
Contributions, $631.08. Not until 1933 did the Societies of the Association 
begin reporting total enrollment of the Societies and their Auxiliaries. 
This year we reported 175. 1933, 175 and enrolled in Mission Study 
Course, 110. 

223 



1940 one Y. W. A., two G. A.'s, one R. A. and one Sunbeam Band. 
Contributions, $670.29. Total enrollment 181 and enrolled in Mission 
Study Course 125. 

1945 one Y. W. A., two G. A.'s, one R. A. and one Sunbeam Band. 
Contributions $2,100.03. Enrollment 214 and enrolled in Mission Study 
Course 140. 

1948. From this year forth amount of contributions were not call- 
ed for in the report forms furnished by the statistical department in 
Nashville, Tenn. as they are included in the Churches' unified budget. 
Instead, the number of tithers are called for and this year the Society 
reported 56. 

1950 one Y. W. A., two G. A.'s, one Sunbeam Band. Total enroll- 
ment 261 and enrolled in Study Course 427. Tithers, 77. This year the 
R. A.'s were transferred to the Brotherhood. 

1955 one Y. W. A., two G. A.'s and one Sunbeam. Total enrollment, 
211. This year the Uniform Church Letter (Report blank) ceased to call 
for Mission Study Course enrollment. Tliis does not mean that the 
Society has ceased that activity - it is just not reported. Tithers, 122. 

1960 one Y. W. A., two G. A.'s, two Sunbeam Bands. Enrollment, 
288. Tithers 51. 

As stated above there is no actual record of the early Presidents 
of the Society. The closest we can get to them is a statement by Mrs. 
J. H. LeRoy, Sr., that around 1900 Mrs. M. G. Grandy was President. 
The first record we have, gives the name of Mrs. Claude W. Duke, wife 
of the pastor, as President and this was in the Church Treasurer's report 
for 1901. No further record is found until 1906 when Mrs. T. S. White 
was President. Mrs. Duke could have served from 1901 to 1905 when 
she moved away. Or, Mrs. W^iite could have taken the office during that 
time. Both must have been very capable women. 

1907 Mrs. John F. Vines, the pastor's wife. 

1908-1909 Mrs. J. H. LeRoy, Sr. 



224 



1910-1912 Mrs. E. W. Stone, the pastor's wife. 
1913-1918 no record has been found. 
1919-1920 Mrs. W. C. Jackson. 
1921 Mrs. H. K. Williams, the pastor's wife. 
1922-1925 Mrs. J. H. White. 

1926-1928 Mrs. S. E. Leigh. In 1926 and 1927 the Associational 
W. M. U. awarded this Church Society the Banner for "having all or- 
ganizations and doing the best all round work for the past year." Another 
significant fact to us is that it was the Newbold Banner, given to the 
Association by our own Mrs. S. C. Newbold. 

1929 Mrs. R. L. Garrett. This year and for the next four our Society 
achieved the Standard of Excellence, 

1930 Mrs. I. A. Ward. 
1931-1932 Mrs. S. E. Leigh. 
1933-1935 Mrs. I. A. Ward. 

1936 Mrs. Carroll Abbott. 

1937 Mrs. S. G. Scott, Sr. 
1938-1939 Mrs. E. N. Ferebee. 
1940-1943 Mrs. W. T. Culpepper. 
1944-1947 Mrs. J. H. LeRoy, Jr. 
1948-1949 Mrs. D. M. Love. 
1950-1951 Mrs. W. W. Massey, Sr. 
1952 Mrs. C. D. Johnston. 

1953-1956 Mrs. James F. Tuttle. In 1955 this Society was the only 
one in the Association that is credited in the minutes as being an A-1 
Society. 

1957-1958 Mrs. Delbert D. Dudley. 
1959 and 1960 Mrs. E. A. Swain. 



225 



CHAPTER XX\TI 

Sunday Bulletins 

The earliest bulletin we have any ti-ace of. through the Church 
minutes or the bulletins themselves, is a copy of Pastor Charles A. G. 
Thomas' New Year bulletin for the year 1S92. This was probably so 
fa\"orably received by tlie congregation that the use of e\-er\- Sunday 
bulletins v\-ere N^ithin a few weeks authorized. The minutes for March 20, 
1S92 read: "On motion h\TOns and announcements be printed on slips 
and placed in the pews e\'er\" Sunday/' This, we believe to be the initia- 
tion of the Sunday b\" Sunday use of the bulletin. However, the word 
"slips" indicates that it was a front and back page only rather than the 
attiacti\'e four-pa^e folder ti.pe New Year bulletin which inspired its use. 

These shps were still in use on July 5. 1S99 when it was "voted 
to continue the slips, but announcements, etc. be made by someone other 
than the pastor - he to announce only funerals or other things ver}^ 
unusual." \\1iy. may we ask. should an\-one make announcements that 
are alread}" printed in the bulletin?' That is the purpose of the bulletin, 
and a lot of xerbal announcements detiact from the solemnit}^ of the 
worship service. Of course the Pastor or someone should interrupt the 
order of worship for "things \"er\" unusual" by which is meant, things 
that need special emphasis in addition to the printed bulletin. 

The next year on December SO. 1900 "J. D. Sykes was directed to 
ha\-e added to slips that ever\-one who attends this Church was supposed 
to contiibute towards its expense." We ha\-e been unable to locate a 
cop\- of that earl}- so-called slip and how long they were in use we can- 
not sa>-. They ma>- have been in use on November 6, 1904 when "Upon 
motion the pastor is directed to hsLve leaflets (Probably a four-page 
bulletin published for use on Sunday. December 11 when the Conven- 
tion Baptist State Conventiiom will be here." It is possible the congrega- 
tion wanted something more elaborate and show\- for the Convention 
Sundav. Or. they may have been discontinued and the abo\-e motion was 
to ha\-e the leaflets for the Con\ention Sunday only. We do not know. 



226 



We cannot say when the fo^ar-page leaflet t^.T>c of b'alletin '.vas 
initiated on a permanent basis. Efforts to locate early copies ha"^-e "."ield- 
ed only Pastor Tnomas'" New Year c-<;'py. Tne next one found was Pastor 
Templeman's Weekly Calendar for Sunda}". Xo\"ember 22. 1925. and v,-e 
do know that they have been in continuous use since that time. Except, 
however, during World W'li II the Chiarch as an econom-y measiare re- 
turned to die two-page slips tor a short time. 

On the follo\'.-ing pages we ha\-e reproduced in chronological 
order. a.s nearh" as possible in style of t>pe. arrangement, etc. an assort- 
ment of six bulletins, including the two mentioned above. Dr. Temple- 
man's 1925 Calendar had its date and ""Com^e Tonight'"" on the inside 
crease and we ha\"e had to mo\"e them to the right in order for it to show 
in this book 



(Page One) 




••«W(©^s;^ 



M¥ Pjiif^tffi.^*' 



.^ 



1892. 



LA>rE Simons, Job Printer, 
Carolinian Building, Elizabeth City, N. C. 




228 



(Page Two) 




A beautiful volunic lies open Ix'fore us. It Ims o()5 bright ^ 

and sjjotlehs pa^^es. Upon tlie golden elasp wliicli hind.s llie«>, ^ 

pages together lire the figures 1892- Up(,n these poges you ^ 

are to write the record of your life. AVhen one begins to write ^ 

a record which sliall go down the ages how carefully he gathers ^ 

all the materials and helps from every possible source! blow ^^ 

earnestly ho musters all his talents j.nd concontrutes tliem in ^ 

that important work. You arc writing a record \\bich will ^ 

meet you in eternity. • Let mc beg you in the name of our ^ 

Saviour to write a record which siiall call Ibrth the "well done." 'Zv^ 

As you enter upon the year l892 your pa.stor bids you ^^ 



May God fill it with joy arid crown it with success. 

4-^ TIE 1^ EETIOSFEGT, ~^^ 






We havc^said farewell to 18U1. We have heard the lasrt ^ 

echo of the "peal which rung her funeral knell." Uut a glance ^^ 

back may help us to apprecuite more the gotxlnei^s of our Uod. ^ 

1891 has been the grandest year in the bistoiy of our Churcii. ^^^ 

During the year we have seen the beautiful house of worship ^ 

dedicated free of debt, the furniture })ut in i)lace, and every dol- ^ 

lar paid as it came due. We have sent out u colony to organise ^ 

a new church and yet our congregations have grown until the ^ 

cry is for more room and our contributions have iuLreased so as ^ 

to enable an advance of i'astor's ai.d sexton's salary, and a large ^ 

increase of our pledges to (..'oiivcniioiiui object;', ^vs we loot: ^^ 

over the year wo arc cons' rai;ic< I to exclaim "\Vlu.t hulh v^ijd ^ 

wrought!" i-ct WA tliaiiic lj(r;l for 1<S!)1 and lake co;,i-.:gi; ^ 
f()rl«;)2 



•//<^^V/^ 



mmm. 






229 



(Page Three) 






THEPieSFEGT 1 



Was never brigliter, the opportunities never greater. Duty ^ 
is ourfs, results are Gods, ll we faithfully perloim our duty ^ 
God -will abundantly give the results. The outlook for the Bap- ^ 
tists in the East was never belter. We need to watch and pray; ^ 
to work and be willing to wait on the Lord. God says to us ^ 
"Go." When we obey every obstacle and barrier will melt ^ 
away. Let us gather our talents, energies and means together ^ 
and use them for Christ. ^ 

There's much to be done during 1892. Will you not enter ^ 
more earnestly into church AvoikV Let us try to got every mem- ^ 
ber of the church into the h;unday School \ou need to awaken ^ 
to that work. 1 he school can be made a great power in the ^ 
con.munity. F(;r Christ's sake help us carry it , forward. Ihe ^ 
woiruins' meetings are slimly attcnacd, let us make an effort to ^ 
get every sister to identify herself with that Avork. The Young ^ 
l-'eople's del ni'tmcnl is growing. Lotus n(/t only strive to get the ^ 
young peoi)le to work, but every member of the church. ^ 

Let us be "loyal to Christ in all things and at all times." ^ 

The demands of Conventional Boards are gieater this year ^ 
than ever. 1 his Ctntcnnitil of IMissions should impress every ^ 
one of us with the grandeur of missionary work and we should |^ 
eheeifuUy and freely give of our means to carry the gospel to ^ 
tho^.e who have it not. The work of the orphanage should be ^ 
very near to us. l(s apieals ;hould be Ireely and fully an- ^ 
sweiod. Tlie work of Education must not be forgotten. The ^ 
^ College has done wonders for the Baptists. Let us rally to every ^ 
call from the Educational interests. ^ 

In closing I desire to emphasize the importance of taking the ^ 
Biblical Recorder. You cannot be an intelligent Baptist with- ^ 
out it. Let us try during 1892 to get the /Recorder in every ^ 
family in the churc h. Leader, do you take it? Begin at once ^ 
and let this ray of information enter into your home. Ihen ^ 
you ought aho to have Charity and Children, the organ of the ^ 
Orphanage; The Foreign Mission Journal and The Home ^ 
field, and if you desire another pai:er none is bettor for you 

lan The Baptist, published in Baltimore. The pastor will .^^ 



will 

receive subscrij.tions ibr these papers. Lotus make J ^92 the n^ 

best year in our church work. May God's richest blessings rest ^ 

u])on }ou. ^ 

Aflcotiouatcly Your Pastor, ^ 



JancMV 1;*, 1892. 



CHA8. A.G.THOMAS. 



230 






YOU ARE INVITED TO ATTEND SERVICES 



r-*-^'Vi^{ 



litA^rr^ 



EVERY SUNDAY- 



Sunday School, 9^30 A. M. 

Preaching, 11:00 A. M., and 7:00 P. M. 
Young Peoples' Meeting, 3:00 P. M. 

Prayer Meeting Every Thursday, 7:30 P. M. 



STRANGERS ALWAYS WELCOME- 



^ "Come thou with us and we will do thee good." 

I 



(pl^as. :k., (^. 'llj'tioirias, Ipaatoi? ^ 




231 



(Page One) 

"I zvas glad zvhen they said unto inc, let us go into the 
house of the Lord" 



^^^klg QialenitHr 



OF THE 



^irs^i ^a^jiiftt 



Main and Dyer Streets 
Elizabeth City, North CaroHna 



EVERY BAPTIST COUNTS ONE' 



SAMUEL H. TEMPLEMAN, Pastor 

Residence, 210 West Main Street 

Residence Telephone 380 



MISS INEZ REID, Church Secretary 

Residence, 201 West Main Street 

Residence Telephone 307-W 



C. P. Harris Clerk 

Miss Inez Reid Treasurer 

J. G. Gregory Chm. Deacons 

J. D. Sykes .. _Chm. Co-op. Com. 
S. E. Williams Chm. Ushers 



Mrs. I. M. Meekins Organist 

Mrs. S. G. Scott Pres. Aid Soc. 

Mrs. J. H. White .Pres. W. M. S. 
Mrs. V. Cartwright ._.-_Pr. Y.W.A. 



(Page Two) 



Today our senace is "In Remembrance of Him". This is a good be- 
ginning of our meeting. 

The pastor found that this church has a splendid reputation in the 
State Convention. Many of the brethren asked how we were able to 
line up so many people in mission and benevolent programs. We are 
able always to line up people who love the Lord. If a man does not 
love the Lord he will not stay lined up. Remember the entire state 
will have its eyes on us on December 6, which is "sign up" Sunday. 
Let us set them a real pace that can be wired to the Recorder that night. 

It is the everlasting train work of ever>' soul, that is going to count in this meet- 
ing. If you can do something, do it for Jesus, not for men. Do not let your desire 
for prominence keep you from glorifying His name. But some one will say, "What 
can I do?" Well the first thing we can all do is to be at the services. If you 
could go to the fair, a ball game or a social function, you can surely go to church. 

Remember the afternoon service is just one hour. Would the heart of Christ be 
grieved to see you go off to some social engagement or something that can be put 
off. Do not grieve the heart of Him who died for you. The first thing then is 
to be at all the services possible. The next thing is to get some one to come with 
you. Do that. Then if you are asked to sing, remember it is not done to fill the 
choir. If the pastor asks you to do something, remember he thinks you can do it. 
This is the way to help the meeting. 

The orphanage offering is next Sunday. The church voted in its Annual meet- 
ing to take this offering. Do in this offering as you would want the brethren to 
do by your children if God were to call you home to Him. 

Dr. Fuller will be with us Monday evening for his first service. Let us be on 
hand and welcome him a wanii welcome. We think it would be especially fitting 
to have our Board of Deacons to lead in this welcome. They would find that they 
had a gallant company with them. As our pastor asks for anything let us show 
that we are willing to be lead in paths of usefulness. Our meeting will call for 
the best within us. 

Our Sunday School is striving for the Standard of Excellence. A few points we 
have already gained. We have been very weak on bringing our bibles. However 
last Sunday, one of the classes in the Adult Department made 71% and another 
made 31%. The men could help to raise this standard if they would. Let's watch 
for the best record yet. The Junior department is doing fine on this point. 

The Woman's Missionary Society will meet Monday afternoon at 3:30. Mrs. S. H. 
Templeman has charge of the program for the afternoon. A good attendance is 
desired. Plans for the meeting which begins Monday evening will be discussed. 
A good part of the time will be devoted to prayer for our meeting. Dr. Temple- 
man may present some work for us to do. 

The Sunbeams will meet at 3:30. This is a good time for both mother and child 
to attend their respective meetings. 

233 



Sunday, 
November 

22 
1925 



(Page Three) 

All Intermediate B. Y. P. U. people who will take an active part in the Auxiliary 
choir will be present Sunday night at 6:30. We will practice, and make final ar- 
rangements for this choir. 

\\'ould you like to have a list of missionaries who have gone out from North 
Carolina? You are preaching the gospel, and ministering to the sin sick soul and 
diseased body by your contribution to Missions. Here is a list; keep it for further 
reference: — 

R. T. Bryan, Shanghai, China. 

T. C. Britton, Soochaw, China. 

Mrs. T. S. Britton, Soochow, China. 

G. P. Bostwick, Pochow, China. 

Mrs. G. W. Green, Canton, China. 

Miss Sophia Lanneau, Soochow, China. 

W. C. Newton, Hwanghsien, China. 

E. F. Tatum, Shanghai, China. 

D. W. Herring, Cheng Chow. 

Mrs. C. K. Dozier, Fukoka, Japan. 

Miss Catherine Bryan, YangchoW: China. 

Mrs. W. H. Tipton, Wuchow, China. 

Mrs. W. D. Bostic, Pochow, China. 

C. A. Leonard. Manchnris, China. 

J. B. Hipps, Shanghai, China. 
Q H. H. McMillan- Soochow, China. 

Mrs. H. H, McMillan, Soochow, China. 
r~\ Miss Pearl Johnson, Shanghai, China. 

^-^ Miss Attie Bostic. Aai-an-fu, China. 

MA. Pv. Gallimore, Yingtak, China. 
J. C. Pov/ell. Oyo, Nigeria, Africa. 
EMrs. J. C. Powell, Oyo, Nigeria. Africa. 
L. B. Olive, Chinkiang, China, 
Mrs. L. B. Olive, Chinkiang, China. 
James Walton Moore, Chefoo, China. 
Gordon K. Middleton, Kaifeng, China. 
'T^ Mrs. Gordon K. Middleton, Kaifeng, China. 

Geo. N. Herring, M. D., Pingtu, China. 

OMrs. M. T. Rankin, Canton, China. 
Miss Alda Grayson, Laichwofu, China. 
NMiss Naomi Schell, Kokura, Japan. 
Miss Laura Cox, Guaymas, NIexico. 
L. E. Blackman, Yangchow, China. 
Mrs. L. E. Blackman, Yangchow, China. 
Miss Katie Murray, Chengchow, China. 
(jj Miss Rachel Newton, China. 

Wm. E. Hines, China. 
l-I Dan T. Hurley, Roumania. 

Mrs. New Lawrence Bostick, China. 
Mrs. Emma Wilson, Norwood, China. 
J. A. Abemathy, Tsinan, China. 
P. E. White, Kaifeng, China. 
Mrs. P. E. White, Kaifeng, China. 
F. T. N. Woodard, Kwe Lin, China. 
Mrs. T. Nell Johnson, Shanghai, China. 
Miss Marjorie Spence, Temuco, Chile. 
234 



I 



(Page Four) 



OUR CHURCH ORGANIZATION 



Term Expires Dec. 31, 1925. 

P. C. COHOON 
M. P.JENNINGS 
S. G. SCOTT 
P. D.TWIDDY 
A.J.SCOTT 



THE DEACONS 

Term Expires Dec. 31, 1926. 

W. T, LOVE 
J. L. PRITCHARD 
E. M. STEVENS 
C. P. HARRIS 
J. B. ANDERSON 



Term Expires Dec. 31, 1927. 

J. G. GREGORY 
C. F. GARRETT 
DR. S. W. GREGORY 
C. H. TWIDDY 
J. B. ALDERMAN 



J. D. SYKES, Chm. 
L. W. HOLLOMAN 
J. J. WHITE, Jr. 
RAY TWIDDY 
S. E.WILLIAMS 
C. C. BAILEY 



CO-OPERATIVE COMMITTEE 

KENYON BAILEY ROLAND GARRETT 

MARION LOVE W. C. JACKSON 

T. O. BUNDY R.W. BERRY 

EDWIN FEREBEE RALEIGH GRIFFIN 

J.W.WILCOX W, A. BUNDY 



MARTIN JENNINGS 
JAMES L. BALL 
ROBERT GRIFFIN 
JOSEPH H. BUNDY 
HARRY JACKSON 



J. H. BALLARD 



JOSEPH L. LAMB 



JACOB COX 



C. P. HARRIS 



J. V. WHITEHURST 
J. J. WHITE, Jr. 



FINANCE COMMITTEE 

W.T.CULPEPPER W.L. SMALL 

USHERS 

S. E. WILLAMS, Chairman 
J. D. SYKES R.W. BERRY 

MARION LOVE J. H. BALLARD 



G. A. TWIDDY 



RAY TWIDDY 
E. N. FEREBEE 



ALLIE WHITE 



INEZ REID 



J.W.WILCOX 
T. O. BUNDY 



Mrs. I. M. MEEKINS, 
Sopranos 

Mrs. J. L. PrJtchard 
Mrs. J. B. Alderman 
Mrs. E. N. Ferebee 
Mrs. S. E. Leigh 



C. H. Twiddy 



CHOIR 

Organist; Asts, Miss EMERALD SYKES, Mrs. D. W. HARRIS, Jr. 

Mrs. S^ G. Etheridge Miss Dorothy Scott Miss E. Sykes Bassos 

Miss Ruth White Tenors S. G. Scott 

Altos J. Paul Sawyer J. B. Alderman 

Mrs. W. C. Twiddy D. Walter Harris J. S. Seeley 

Mrs. J. D. Sykes Joseph Pinner J.C.Wood 



S. M. Boettcher 
Mrs. D. W. Harris, Jr. 
Miss Annie M. Seeley 
Miss Grace Sanderlin 



L. W. Holloman 
J. Paul Sawyer 
Miss Kate Wood 



THE SUNDAY SCHOOL 
-Supt. A. J. Scott -— Secretary P. D. Twiddy Treasurer 

DEPARTMENTAL SUPERINTENDENTS 

_. Senior Adult Mrs. J. L. Pritchard, Primary and Beginners 

Intermediate Miss Inez Reid Cradle Roll 

Juniors Mrs. S. M. Boettcher Home Dept. 



Business Men's Bible Class 

J. G. Gregory Teacher 

G. R. Barrow President 

Alathean Bible Class 

Mrs. S. E. Leigh Teacher 

Mrs. Ida Stegar .... . Pres. 
(Monthly meeting 1st Mon- 
day evening ot month) 



ORGANIZED CLASSES 

ADULT DEPARTMENT 
Baraca Bible Class 

J. B. Alderman .._ ...Teacher 

D. W. Harris, Jr. Pres. 

The T. E. L. Class 

Mrs. I. M. Meekins Teacher 

Mrs. W. C. Jackson Pres. 

(Monthly meeting last Tues- 
day evening of month) 



Fidelis Bible Class 

S. H. Templeman ..Teacher 
Miss Elizabeth Nash ... Pres. 
(Monthly meetings 2nd Mon- 
day evening of month) 



Jr. Fidelis Bible 

Mrs. W. T. Love 

Helen Leigh 

Sr. B. Y. P. U. 

St. Clair Bailey, President 
Jacob Cox, Vice President 
Inez Cartwright, Rec. Sec. 

and Treas. 
Elizabeth Williams, Cor. Sec. 
Elizabeth Sykes, Chorister 
Emerald Sykes, Pianist 

Intermediate B. Y. P. U. 
Mrs. S. H. Templeman, Ldr. 
Ebert Bailey, President 
Doris Abbott, Vice President 



The Woman's Missionary 
Society 

(Last Monday of month) 
Mrs. J. H. White, President 
Mrs. J. H. LeRoy, Vice Pres. 
Miss Inez Reid, Secretary 
Mrs. E. N. Ferebee, Pianist 
Mrs. R. C. Abbott, Auditor 



YOUNG PEOPLE'S DEPARTMENT 
Class Boethian Bible Class 

Teacher E. T. Burgess Teacher 

President J. C. Abbott President 



Evelyn Jennings, Rec. Sec. 
Mary L. Bailey, Cor. Sec. 
Elwood Boll, Treas. 
Jr. B. Y. P. U. 
Miss Bernicc Twiddy, Ldr. 
Mrs. V. Cartwright, 

Asst. Leader 

Mrs. E, Pappendick, 

. Asst. Leader 

Oceola West, President 
Evelyn Hettrick, Vice Pres. 
Elizabeth Bright, Rec. Sec. 

MISSIONARY SOCIETIES 

Girls' Auxiliary 

Inez Reid _ Counselor 

Evelyn Jennings, President 
Clara Pritchard, Vice Pres. 
Selton Twiddy, Rec. Secretary 
(Meets 1st and 3rd Sunday 
afternoons) 



Florence Ballard, Rec. Sec. 
Edwin Culpepper, Treas. 
Russell Evans, Librarian 
Horace Jones, Chorister 

Sunbeams 
Vera Jennings, President 
Katharine Miller, Vice Pres. 
Mrs. M. P. Jennings, Ldr. 
Inez Templeman, Sec. 
Francis Jennings, Treas. 
Horace Jones, Chorister 



The Young Woman's 
Auxiliary 

Mrs. Vernor Cartwright, Pres. 
Miss Hilda Jordan, Vice Pres. 
Miss Inez Cartwright, 

Rec. Sec. 

Miss Mary Owens, Treas. 



Mrs. S. G. Scott .. 
Mrs. S. M. Rogers 



AID SOCIETY 
(First Monday in month) 

President Mrs. P. D. Twiddy Treasurer 

Vice President Mrs. E. M. Ferebee Secretary 



235 



(Page One) 

yy ?^ ! 

§jV "I was glad ivJicn they said unto vie, Jet us go in tlic ^§ 

jf? house of the Lord" cy [ 

It h 

II l! 

f _^ i 









Main and Dyer Streets 



GERALD H. PAYNE, Pastor 
210 W. Main Street 



ii Phone 296 

I 



MISS LOUISE McDANIEL, Secretary 
Residence Phone 296 






?| Elizabeth City, North Carohna ?§ 

fl fl 

If ll 

§§ "EVERY PERSON COUNTS ONE" §^ 



§1 fi 



§ 



¥i 



Office In Church— Phone 987 -W Office Hours: 9 A.M. to 12 ?& 

If 

236 



(Page Two) 

Sunday, September 23, 1928. 

MORNING WORSHIP 

Prelude — "Selected." 
Holy! Holy! Holy! 
Invocation 

Anthem — "O Worship the Lord" Blose 

Hymn No. 244. 
Prayer 

Hymn No. 74. 
Offertory — "Selected." 

Anthem — "Seek Ye the Lord" Geibel 

Sermon— "TELLING JESUS" Pastor 

Hymn No. 136. 
Benediction 
Postlude — "Selected." 



<$x$^x$^^>4x$^$xM^ 



EVENING WORSHIP 

Prelude — "The Farewell" Fosti 

Doxology. 
Hymn No. 67. 

Violin Solo Miss Bertha Elizabeth Thalley 

Hymn No. 66. 
Prayer. 
Hymn No. 54. 

Offertory — "Melody in E Minor" Chopin 

Anthem — "0 Render Thanks" Albert Pontius 

Sermon— "THE GREAT GOD IN THE HANDS OF A MAN" Pastor 

Hymn No. 41. 

Benediction. 

Postlude — "Festal Postlude in F" Lemoiqre 

237 



(Page Three) 



NEWS AND ANNOUNCEMENTS 

Prayer meeting Wednesday evening at 7:30 P.M. All members of the Church 
are cordially invited. 

The last news from Miss Mary Louise Bailey, who is in the hospital at Green- 
ville, is that she is a little improved. 

The meeting of the Chowan Association was a good one considering the 
weatlier. It rained, and then rained some more but we carried on just the 
same. The Association will meet with the Sawyers Creek Church next year, 
and Rev. R. W. Prevost, is to preach the sermon. 

The Ladies' Aid Society will meet Monday afternoon at 3:30 instead of 4:00 
o'clock. Please note the change. 

Mrs. L A. Ward, will be calling upon some of those this week who have 
pledged for the Building Fund. No, we are not dunning anybody, but we just 
sunply must have the money if the work is to go on. So when she calls please 
do your best for her. 

Mrs. D. A. Morgan, and Mrs. H. S. Overman, will present a play in the Armex 
of the First Baptist Church Friday evening, September 28th, at 8:00 o'clock, 
entitled "A Manless Wedding from Kinny Keet." This consists of a beautiful 
bridle chorus, brides maid, maid of honor, solos and dialogues. It will be given 
for the benefit of the First Baptist Church, and Christ's Episcopal Church. Ad- 
mission 25 cents to all. Come and laugh your sorrows away — as this is a tackey 
affair and full of screams. All Star Cast. 

What do members receive from their church? If they are saved by the Crace 
of Cod they receive: 1. Regular Spiritual instruction and inspiration. 2. A 
systematic and definite Bible Study through the Sunday School. 3. An op- 
portimity e\ery week for prayer and conference with other Christians. 4. The 
comfort and friendship of other disciples. 5. Opportunities for Christian service 
in a great \'ariety of the best causes known to the world. That is, if they take 
adxantage of their privileges. 

What does a person get from the church, if he be a member and not a Chris- 
tian? Nothing, he is out of place, and if he gives advice it is from a wordly 
heart and brings trouble to the church. "Search the scriptures, for in them ye 
think ye have eternal life, and they are they which testify of me." Jesus. 

Are you a Christian? Then if you would be happy, and enjoy your religion 
take your bible and visit some lost person and pray with them about their soul's 
saKation. "He that winneth souls is wise." 

A Church member oiiglit to gi\ e his church in return for the blessings received. 
I. A loyal and uncritical affection. 2. A systematic and generous offering of 
the Lord's money to meet all necessary expenses. 3. A regular and joyful 
attendance of all prayer service and its Bible study. 4. The best services of 
heart and mind of some of the work the church is doing. Amen. 

Members of the Intermediate B. Y. P. U. — Come promptly at P-.30. Bring 
your Bibles with you. 

The Y. W. A. will meet on Tuesday evening at 6:00 o'clock. 

238 



(Page Four) 



CHURCH COVENANT 



Having been led, as we believe, by the Spirit of God to receive 
the Lord Jesus Christ as our Savior, and, on profession of our faith, 
having been baptized into the name of the Father, the Son, and the 
Holy Ghost, we do now humbly and thankfully acknowledge our- 
selves under the most sacred obligations to be the Lord's. 

Relying on the gracious aid of the Holy Spirit, we declare it to 
be the solemn purpose of our hearts to walk together in Christian 
love, to strive for the advancement of this Church in knowledge, 
holiness and comfort; to promote its prosperity, and spirituality; to 
sustain its worship, ordinances, discipline and doctrines; to contribute 
as God may prosper us, to the payment of the expenses of the Church, 
to the relief of the needy, and to the spread of the Gospel. We do 
also confess it to be our Christian duty to maintain family and secret 
devotion to search the Scriptures, and religiously to educate our 
children; to seek the salvation of our kindred and acquaintances, to 
walk circumspectly before the world, to be just in our dealings, faith- 
ful in our engagements, and exemplary in our deportment; to attend 
as far as we are able, the meetings of our Church, and to be zealous 
in our efforts to advance the kingdom of our Savior. 

We furthermore confess ourselves solemnly bound, as one body 
in Christ, to watch over one another in brotherly love; to remember 
one another in prayer; to comfort one another in sickness and distress; 
to cultivate Christian sympathy and courtesy; to be slow to take of- 
fense, ready for reconciliation and mindful of the rules of our Savior 
to secure it without delay. We moreover engage, that when we re- 
move from this place, we will, as soon as practicable, unite with some 
other church of like faith, where we can carry out the spirit of this 
covenant and principles of God's Word. Amen. 

"Keep, therefore, the words of this covenant, and do them that 
ye may prosper in all that ye do." (Duet. 29:9.) 

239 



(Page One) 

^trsi baptist Qj^ijurtij 

ERWIN H. POTTS, Th.D., Pastor 

ELIZABETH CITY, N. C. 

1 
I 

Sunday, November 11, 1945 

Morning Worship — 11 O'clock 

"The Lord is in His Holy Temple; let all the earth keep 
silence before Him." 
Sunday School— 9:45 A.M. 
Morning Worship — 11:00 O'clock 
Hymns Nos. 2, 380 and 244 

Hymn Anthem — "America the Beautiful" The Choir 

Sermon— "OPENING THE WINDOWS OF HEAVEN" Pastor 

The Baptist Training Union— 6:15 P.M. 

Evening Worship — 7:30 O'clock 

Hymns Nos. 33 (First and 4th Stanzas), 145, 337 and 242 

Anthem — "Beautiful Saviour" (Old Crusaders' Hymn) The Choir 

Sermon— "THE TRIUMPHANT CHURCH" Pastor 



THIS WEEK'S OPPORTUNITIES 
MONDAY: 

3:30 P.M. Junior Choir Rehearsal. 

7:30 P.M. Royal Ambassadors meet. \ 



WEDNESDAY: 

3:30 P.M. Youth Choir Rehearsal. 
7:30 P.M. Mid-week Prayer Service. 
8:30 P.M. Adult Choir Rehearsal. 

THURSDAY: 

7:30 P.M. Adult Choir Rehearsal. 



THE FLOWERS TODAY are gi\en in memory of Mrs. W. J. Broughton by 
her children, Mrs. D. Walter Harris and Mr. W. R. Broughton. 

THE N. C. BAPTIST STATE CONVENTION meets in Raleigh First Baptist 
Church this week, Tuesday through Thursday. 

WE WELCOME the members of the Elizabeth City High School Band and 
the American Legion as our special guests this morning. 

TUNE IN OVER WCNC today at 1:00 o'clock and hear transcribed messages 
by Dr. A. H. Compton, famous physicist and Nobel Prize winner, and John 
Foster Dulles, famed international statesman, and songs by Edward Davies, 
well-known network baritone. These appear in the interest of "Men and 
Missions Sunday" which is today. 

^ =^ 

240 



(Page Two) 



"TRUST ME, TRY ME, PROVE ME" 

PROPOSED BUDGET FOR THE YEAR OF 1946 

Recommended by the Finance Committee and the Board of Deacons 

FIRST BAPTIST CHURCH 
MISSIONS: 

Baptist Cooperative Program $3,000.00 

Associational Missions 300.00 

Fellowship Fund 200.00 

American Bible Society 25.00 

Associational Minutes 20.00 

Mills Home (Baptist Orphanage) 725.00 

Baptist Hospital 175.00 

State Missions 200.00 

Home Missions 200.00 

Foreign Missions 200.00 $ 5,045.00 

(These goals for State, Home and For- 
eign Missions are not to include those 
gifts made by the W.M.U. organizations) 
CURRENT EXPENSES: 
Salaries: 

Pastor $3,300.00 

Secretary and Choir Director 1,500.00 

Organist 420.00 

Supt. of BuUdings 1,800.00 $7,020.00 

Operations: 

Sunday School $ 750.00 

B. T. U 125.00 

Office supplies, bulletins 385.00 

Fuel, Lights, Gas, etc. 650.00 

Radio Broadcasts 120.00 

Pastor supplies 100.00 

Convention Expenses 125.00 

Music and Choir 100.00 

Miscellaneous, etc. 700.00 

Repairs 2,000.00 

Insurance and Taxes 200.00 $5,255.00 

Total Current Expense $12,275.00 

TOTAL BUDGET $17,320.00 

o « o e 

GOD'S WORD SAYS: 

Leviticus 27:30 — "All the tithe of the land is the Lord's; it is holy unto the Lord." 
Malachi 3:10 — "Bring ye all the tithes into the storehouse . . . and prove me now 

herewith saith the Lord." 
Deut. 16:17 — "E\ery man shall gi\e as he is able, according to the blessing of the 

Lord." 
Acts 20:35 — "Remember the words of the Lord Jesus, how he said, it is more blessed 

to give than to receive." 

"LOYALTY LIFTS THE LOAD ' 

241 



(Page Three) 

"STEP UP YOUR GIVING TO MATCH YOUR LIVING" 
SOURCES OF INCOME TO MEET THIS PROPOSED BUDGET: 

MISSIONS: 

The first five items in the above suggest- 
ed goals for missions are to be subscribed 
to and paid through your church en- 
velopes $3,545.00 

(To meet this goal you should subscribe 

at least 35 cents out of every dollar for 

this purpose) 

Orphanage — First Sunday's collection in 

tlie Sunday School and at Thanksgiving $ 725.00 

Hospital — Mother's Day in Sunday 

School 175.00 

State Missions — One Sunday in Sunday 

School and Plate Offering 200.00 

Home Missions — One Sunday in Sunday 

School and Plate Offering 200.00 

Foreign Missions — One Sunday in Sun- 
day School and Plate Offering 200.00 

Total to be raised through special offer- 
ings $1,500.00 

Total Missions Offerings $ 5,045.00 

CURRENT EXPENSES: 

Sunday School (other than Missions)$l,500.00 
Plate Offering (Other than Missions) 1,200.00 

Miscellaneous 300.00 

Total $3,000.00 

To be subscribed to and paid through 

your church envelopes 9,275.00 

(To meet this goal you should subscribe 
65 cents out of every dollar for this pur- 
pose.) 

Total then for Current Expenses $12,275.00 

GRAND TOTAL BUDGET _ $17,320.00 

o o « « 

THE BOARD OF DEACONS and Finance Committee recommend that this budget 
be adopted, that it be presented to the church for adoption on Sunday, November 
11th, that pledges be accepted on the 18th and 25th of November and that those 
who have not by that time subscribed be canvassed on the first Sunday in December. 

THIS PROPOSED BUDGET calls for $875.00 more for missions than in 1945, 
and for $221.00 more for current expenses than in 1945. 

SUNDAY, NOVEMBER 18TH AND 25TH are to be known as "LOYALTY SUN- 
DAYS" when e\'ery member is urged to attend services and enlist anew in the work 
of your church and especially to sign a card to let your church leaders and God 
know about how much they can depend on you in a financial way for 1946. 

"SHARE TO THE FULL IN THE JOY OF GIVING" 

242 



(Page Four) 

A WORD FROM THE PASTOR: 

My dear friends. 

Once again we come to one of the great times in our church life. We are 
coming to the time when we will be called upon to express our loyalty to God and 
His cause in a financial way. We all know full well that God's Cause must be 
well-financed and that God has left us a marvelous way by which his program can 
be financed. He says, "upon the first day of the week, let everyone of you lay 
by him in store as God hath prospered him." 

I feel sure that each one of you will want to share in the full the joy of ha\ang 
a part in the great work of His kingdom throughout the world. On November the 
18th and 25th, we will have a special opportunity to show our loyalty to God. Let's 
fill our auditorium with loyal people on those days and make them the greatest of 
their kind we have ever known. 

Cordially yours, 

Erwin H. Potts 



LOYALTY means that our people will increase their pledges in proportion to the 
need as outlined in the budget. 

A PARAGRAPH FROM OUR CHURCH COVENANT . . . 

Every member of our church should take as his or her standard our Church 
Covenant in properly relating himself or herself to the program of our church. In 
it we covenant. 

"That we will cheerfully and according to our ability-, regularly contribute 
of our means for the relief of the poor, for the expenses of the church, 
for the maintenance of a faithful gospel ministry among, and for the spread 
of the gospel throughout all the world." 

This covenant is entirely reasonable, and to everyone who complies with it in 
full, there is sure to come a large measure of happiness and serviceableness in the 
Christian life — regularly, cheerfully and according to ability'. 

WHEN MAKING A PLEDGE I ought to remember that our Lord gave his all, 
even unto his life, and that he only asks me to gi\e a small percentage of my income 
to share the ministry of His lo\e. 

WHY SHOULD I SIGN A PLEDGE CARD? I don't know how much I will have 
this year, but, then, I promise to pay my light bills, gas bills, and phone bills, and 
my house payments and many other things that I lia\e. Why shouldn't I sign a 
pledge card to the Lord who gives me life and strength to get what I have? 

AM I GOING to designate upon this pledge card the least amount that I can give 
and get by with it, or am I going to put down a worthy offering for my Lord and 
His Cause? 

"ACCORDING TO YOUR FAITH BE IT UNTO YOU " 

243 



(Page One) 






'^Slizabciii ($ite, ^. ($. 




1 HEY are not of fJie world, even as I am 
not of the world. Sanctify them in the truth; 
thy word is truth. As thoii didst send me into 
the zvorld, even so sent I them into the world. 
And for their sakes I sanctify myself, that 
they themselves also may be sanctified in 
truth. Neither for these only do I pray, but 
for them also that believe on me through their 
word; that they may all be one; even as thou, 
Father, art in me, and I in thee, that they also 
may be in us; that the world may believe that 
thou didst send me. 

From Jesus' prayer for His followers — John 17. 



244 



(Page Two) 

MORNING WORSHIP, 11 O'CLOCK 

January 28, 1951 



TJic s/^irif of reverence pen'ades the sanctuary when silence is observed 

Organ Prelude (the people in devout meditation) 

"Sinfonia" from A Cantata Bach 

Hymn of Praise (the people standing) "Crown Him With Many Crowns" — Hymn 325 

Call to Worship 

In\ocation (the people seated and bowed) 

Silent Prayer 

The Lord's Prayer 

Responsive Reading — Selection 125 

Gloria (the people standing) 

Anthem — "Lord, Most Holy" from "Stabat Mater" Rossini 

Mrs. Frank Stilwell, Soloist 

Scripture Reading — Matthew 25:1-30 

Pastoral Prayer 

Choir Response 

Offering 

Organ Selection — "O Blessed Jesu" Brahms 

Solo— "Let Not Your Heart Be Troubled" Oley Speaks 

Mrs. Lanier White 

Hymn of Devotion — "O Lord and Master of Us AH" ^- Hymn 332 

Dedication of Offering 

The Sermon— THE STRANGE ECONOMY OF GOD The Pastor 

Prayer 

Hymn of Action— "Rise Up, O Men of God" Hymn 482 

Benediction (the people seated) 

Organ Postlude — "Finale" from "Second Organ Symphony" Widor 

245 



(Page Three) 

EVENING WORSHIP, 7:30 O'CLOCK 

January 28, 1951 

Organ Prelude — "Pastorale" -— Carelli 

Call to Worship and Invocation 

Hymn 198 — "Now The Day Is Over" Barnby 

Hymn 317 — "Beneath The Cross of Jesus" Maker 

Scripture Lesson — Genesis 9 

Anthem — "Praise the Lord" Baines 

Girls' Choir, Sylvia Long, Soloist 
Prayer 
Worship in Offering 

Organ Selection — "Adagio" from "Second Organ Symphony" Widor 

Anthem — "Sing Unto The Lord" Protheroe 

The Sermon— GRACE TO COVER ALL OUR SINS The Pastor 

Hymn 457— "I Would Be True" Peek 

Benediction 

Organ Postlude — "Finale" from "Second Organ Symphony" _ Widor 



■ J^. 



CHURCH NOTES 

WEDNESDAY being the fifth Wednesday in the month — the G.A.'s will not meet 
until Wednesday, Febrtiary 7th. 

TRIM AYDLETT, JR., left Wednesday to join the Coast Guard. 

The following resolution drawn up and approved by the Dorcas Class in honor 
of Mrs. S. C. Newbold: 

WHEREAS, Mrs. S. C. Newbold organized and taught for twenty-one years 
the Dorcas Sunday School Class of the First Baptist Church in Elizabeth City, 
N. C: And whereas her long life was one of Christian simplicity, beauty, radi- 
ance, unselfishness, friendliness, helpfulness and loyalty to the great traditions 
and devotion to her Saviour: And whereas she touched and changed forever the 
lives of many of us who knew her in the church family: And whereas in her own 
home children and grandchildren have risen up to call her blessed, and to walk 
in her ways: And whereas the memory of this saintly handmaiden of the Lord 
is with us a perpetual benediction: 

BE IT THEREFORE RESOLVED that we the members of the Dorcas 
Class, (1) Express our gratitude to God for her we loved so dearly and whom 
we now see no more: (2) Affirm our personal allegiance to the church she served 
and the ideals she followed: (3) Address ourselves afresh to the Sunday School 
and Church from which came so saintly and wise a leader, that others may be 
led to follow in her train: (4) Send copies of these resolutions to The Daily Ad- 
vance of Elizabeth City, The Biblical Recorder and the family of Mrs. Newbold, 
and request their publication in our church bulletin and their inclusion in the 
records of our church. 

Respectfully submitted, 

Mrs. Lee Parker 
Mrs. Sadie Gregory 
Mrs. Bertie McDonald 

246 



(Page Four) 



THE MEMBERSHIP of our Sunday School and Church, also the Nursery Depart- 
ment, are deeply appreciative of tlie gracious offer of the ladies in the Dorcas 
Class (the class taught so long by Mrs. S. C. Newbold) of their class room to an 
expanding nursery department. Last week the carpenters cut an opening between 
this room and the adjoining nursery room. This means that the little children 
for so long hopelessly crowded, will now have three adjoining rooms. The faith- 
ful, competent leaders of this department are to be congratulated for the growth 
and progress of their group. They are now in a position to care for more child- 
ren — and there are many more as yet unreached in our community. In the words 
of the old Sunday School song: "Bring them in to Jesus." Meanwhile class room 
facilities in a comer of the adult Sunday School assembly room have been pro- 
vided for the Dorcas Class, including the installation of a door. 

MRS. F. W. SIMONDS, mother of the former Mrs. George Twiddy, Jr., who died 
last year, has turned over to our Director of Music, Mrs. Stilwell, a valuable and 
choice collection of anthems, solo, and books on music which can be used to 
great advantage in our church music program. For this generous offer Mrs. Stil- 
well is profoundly grateful. 

WE REGRET that more of our people were not present at the well-attended general 
meeting of our W.M.U. last Monday to hear the encouraging reports of the work 
of this group. Our W.M.U. under the leadership of Mrs. W. W. Massey is 
growing in numbers and increasing in influence and Christian service. Because 
of tlie large growth of the Jennie Overman Circle, it has been divided. Miss 
Kathleen Jackson is a leader of the group nam.ed for the missionary, "Frances 
Tally", and Mrs. S. H. Alford is leader of the group named for Miss Lottie Moon. 
A charming letter from Miss Mary Lee Ernest, expressing her appreciation for 
the Christmas remembrances, was read. 

THE SYMPATHY of our membership is extended to the family of Mr. W. A. Jackson 
who died last week in his 83rd year. 

OUR SYMPATHY is also extended to the family of Mrs. Karl Miller whose father 
died recently in Tarboro, N. C. 

WE REMEMBER IN PRAYER: 

Mr. D. M. Love, Colonial Hospital, Rochester Minn. 
Mr. L. E. Owens, McGuire Veterans Hospital, Richmond, Va. 
Mrs. S. G. Scott, Albemarle Hospital 
Mrs. S. B. Harris, Albemarle Hospital 
Mrs. J. C. Spence, Albemarle Hospital 
Mr. N. S. Leary, 807 Pennsylvania Avenue 
Mrs. J. H. King, 904 W. Church Street 

Mr. Octavius Long, father of Mr. Raleigh Long, is in the Albemarle Hospital re- 
cuperating from an operation involving the amputation of a limb. 

WHERE TWO OR THREE are gathered in Jesus' name our Savior has promised to 
be present. There have been times when almost that few met for the Wednes- 
day prayer-service and felt his presence there. However many more have been 
coming lately. Last Wednesday on a chilly rainy evening the group actually 
over-flowed the Baraca Class room. Men and women are hungry for simple, 
direct communion with God and fellowship with one another. Join us in prayer 
and Bible study each Wednesday at 7:30. 

Church Staff: 

W. W. Finlator, Minister 

Mrs. Frank Stilwell, Director of Music 

Miss Emerald Sykes, Organist 

Mrs. E. F. Aydlett, Secretary 

247 



(Page One) 




"THE OPEN DOOR" 

"God, make the door of this house we have raised to Thee ivide enough 
to receive all who need human love, fellozvship and the Father's care 
and narrozv enough to shut out envy, pride and hate. Make its threshold 
smooth that it may be no stumbling block to childhood, zveakness or 
straying feet, but rugged and strong cnougli to turn back the tempter's 
pozver. God, make the door of this house the gatczvay to Thy Eternal 
Kingdom." 

MAURICE W. GRISSOM, Minister 



248 



(Page Two) 

MORNING WORSHIP 

AUGUST 6, 1961 ELEVEN O'CLOCK 

Many find God in quietness. Do not unthinkingly disturb them in their quest. 

* CHIMES FROM THE TOWER 

" ORGAN PRELUDE (the people in devout meditation) 

O Worship the King Mathews 

CALL TO WORSHIP (the people standing) 

The Minister: Come, walk in the way of the Lord with songs of gladness and 
joy. 

The People: O magnify the Lord with me and let us exalt his name together. 
The Minister: Honor and majesty are before the Lord; strength and beauty 
are in his sanctuary. 

* HYMN OF PRAISE 172 _.... Praise to the Lord, the Almighty 

INVOCATION The Lord's Prayer 

** QUIET MEDITATION 

THE FIRST LESSON Jeremiah 26:1-7, 10-15 

QUIET MEDITATION 

THE SECOND LESSON Mattliew 23:25-39 

PASTORAL PRAYER Choral Response 

<• HYMN OF CONSECRATION 242 The Lord is my Shepherd 

ORGAN OFFERTORY — I Call on Thee, Lord Jesus ._. __ Bach 

THE DOXOLOGY 

DEDICATION OF TITHES AND OFFERINGS 

ANTHEM — All Ye Who Love tlie Lord Draw Near 16th Century 

Chancel Choir 

THE MESSAGE — GOD'S REVELATION The Minister 

HYMN OF INVITATION 347 Art Thou Weary, Heavy Laden 

BENEDICTION Choral Response 

ORGAN POSTLUDE — Toccata Widor 

* Ushers will seat waiting worshipers 



WE WELCOME YOU who visit with us today and hope you will have opportunity 
to worship with us again. We urge you to sign the cards found in the pews and 
place them in the offering plates. 

WE REMEMBER our known ill: Albemarle Hospital — Miss Annie Brothers, Mr. 
William Melson, Mr. H. L. Sears. 

Earthly pleasures vainly call me; He has broken ev'ry fetter, 

I would be like Jesus; I would be like Jesus; 

Nothing worldly shall enthrall me; That my soul may serve Him better, 

I would be like Jesus. I would be like Jesus. 

Be like Jesus, this my song. 

In the home and in the throng; 

Be like Jesus all day long! 

I would be like Jesus. 

249 



(Page Three) 

EVENING WORSHIP 
8:00 P.M. 



ORGAN PRELUDE — Carillon Dalamarter 

HYMN 584 _ The Church's One Foundation 

SCRIPTURE _ Isaiah 44:1-8, 21-23 

EVENING PRAYER 

HYMN 256 Love, Divine, All Loves Excelling 

ORGAN OFFERTORY — Prayer in F Guilmant 

THE MESSAGE — HAPPINESS IN SERVICE __ .._ The Minister 

HYMN OF INVITATION 462 More Love to Thee, O Christ 

BENEDICTION 

ORGAN POSTLUDE — Vesper Hymn - Bortniansky 

(This service is broadcast over Station WCNC) 



CALENDAR FOR THE WEEK 

Sunday 

9:30 A.M.— Sunday School 
11:00 A.M. — Morning Worship 
8:00 P.M. — Evening Worship 

Monday 

9:30 A.M.— R.A.'s 
10:00 A.M.— Primary Choir 

Tuesday 
10:00 A.M.— Junior II G.A. 
4:00 P.M. — Annie Armstrong Jr. G. A. w^ith 

Miss Landra Sherlock 
7:00 P.M.— Brotherhood Supper 

Wednesday 

10:00 A.M.— Junior Choir 
11:00 A.M.— Youth Choir 
8:00 P.M. — Prayer Service - Brotherhood 

Thursday 

8:00 P.M.— Chancel Choir Rehearsal 

Friday 

10:00 A.M.— Beginner Choir 



VISIT THE CHURCH LIBRARY. You will find an assortment of informative, 
interesting, and inspiring books for all ages. The church bulletin board is 
featuring a group of new books which have recently been added for your en- 
joyment. 

250 



(Page Four) 

DIRECTORY FIRST BAPTIST CHURCH 

WORSHI P SERVICE 

Church — Summer, 11:00 A.M., 8:00 P.M.; Winter, 1 1:00 A.M., 7:30 P.M. 

Sunday School — 9:30 A.M. 

Prayer Services (Wednesday) — Summer, 8:00 P.M.; Winter, 7:30 P.M. 

BUSINESS MEETINGS 

Board of Deacons Second Sunday; Sunday School Council First Wednesday 

CHURCH OFFICERS 

Minister — Maurice W. Grissom 

Minister of Education Treasurer H. S. Morrlsette 

Minister of Music Mrs. W. L. Winslow Secretary Mrs. W. B. Riddicl< 

Organist . Miss Emerald Sykes Librarian Mrs. D. D. Dudley 

Sexton Zack White 

BOARD OF DEACONS 
C. P. Harris, Jr., Chairman; C. M. Gordon, Vice Chairman; J. E. Corbett, Secretary 
G. R. Barrow, Lifetime Honorary Deacon 
Terms Expiring 
1962 1963 1964 1965 

R L. Garrett C.M.Ashley J.C.Abbott J. E. Corbett 

J. L. Lamb, Jr. W. G. Aydlett A. B. Etheridge D. D. Dudley 

Mrs. J. H. LeRoy, Jr. Cecil Basnight W. W. Garrett C. M. Gordon 

J. H. Moore R. C. Bunch W. A. Hoggard, Jr. C. P. Harris, Jr. 

Selby Scott D. M. Love M. D. Rhodes Mrs. E. A. Swoin 

Gerald White Dewey Wells L. E. Sherlock L. H. Tarkenton 

CHURCH COMMITTEES 
BAPTISM: L. E. Sherlock, Chairman, Cecil Basnight, Mrs. W. R. Johnson, Mrs. R. W. Long, Mrs. Wilbur 

West. 
FINANCE AND PROPERTY: J. H. Moore, Chairman, J.C. Abbott, Mrs. I. T. Blanchard, R. C. Bunch, Mrs. 
H. W. Bundy, Mrs. W. K. Carter, W. A. Hoggard, Howard Morrisette, Mrs. Herman Sawyer, Arnold 
Winslow. 
HOSTESS; Mrs. Calvin P. Pritchard, Chairman, Mrs. Roscoe Brickhouse, Mrs. James Jackson, Mrs. R. W. 

Long, Mrs. Wilbur West. 
MEMBERSHIP AND FELLOWSHIP: M. D. Rhodes, Chairman, Harry W. Jackson, Vice Chairman, Mr. and 
Mrs. W. W. Garrett, Mrs. Harry W. Jackson, Mrs. M. D. Rhodes, Mr. and Mrs. Willard Savin, Mrs. 
Percy Sanders. 
MEMORIAL: Mrs. J. H. LeRoy, Jr., Chairman, Mrs. Elisha Coppersmith, E. R. Ferrell, Miss Dorothy Gard, 

D. M. Love. 
MUSIC: Mrs. E. A. Swain, Chairman, Mrs. J. J. Stokes, Mrs. Hubert Tarkenton, Dewey Wells, E. Paul Wise. 
PLANNING: R. L. Garrett, Chairman, J. C. Abbott, Mrs. W. T. Culpepper, C. M. Gordon, J. H. Moore, Mrs. 

H. S. Overman, C. R. Venn. 
PULPIT SUPPLY: Gerald White, Chairman, T. J. Boswell, C. B. Johnston, J. C. Prescott, Mrs. S. G. Scott, 

Jr., Mrs. H. A. Thorson. 
RELIGIOUS EDUCATION: Selby Scott, Chairman, Mrs. J. C. Abbott, T. R. Dabbs, Mrs. A. E. Maddox, Her- 
man Sawyer. 
SOCIAL SERVICE: W. W. Garrett, Chairman, J. E. Corbett, Vice Chairman, Mrs. Warren Hewett, Mrs. 

Mather Hurdle, Mrs. C. S. Parker. 
TRUSTEES: R. L. Garrett, H. L. Jackson, J. H. Moore. 
USHER: C. M. Ashley, Chairman, W. K. Carter, Calvin P. Pritchard. 

BROTHERHOOD 
President, Gerald White; Vice President, C. R. Vann; Secretary, W. M. West; Christian Witness Leader, H. L. 
Jackson; Personal Stewardship Leader, J. E. Corbett; World Mission Leader, F. J. O'Leary; R. A. Lead- 

SUNDAY SCHOOL 
GENERAL OFFICERS: Superintendent, Hubert Tarkenton; Associate Superintendents, C. M. Ashley, J. L. 

Lamb, Jr.; Secretary, J. F. Tuttle; Assoc. Secretary, J. L. Lamb, Sr. 
ADULT DEPT.: Superintendent, W. W. Garrett; Assoc. Supt., M. D. Rhodes. 
YOUNG ADULT I DEPT.: Superintendent, Willard Savin; Assoc. Supt., D. D. Dudley. 
YOUNG ADULT II DEPT.: Superintendent, Mother M. Hurdle; Assoc. Supt., N. T. Aydlett, II. 
YOUNG PEOPLE'S DEPT.: Superintendent, Miss Kathleen Jackson. 
INTERMEDIATE DEPT.: Superintendent, J. L. Lamb, Jr.; Assoc. Supt., Reid Overman. 
JUNIOR DEPT.: Superintendent, Mrs. S. G. Scott, Jr. 

PRIMARY DEPT.: Superintendent, Mrs. Cecil Basnight; Assoc. Supt., Mrs. William Garrett. 
BEGINNER II Dept.: Superintendent, Mrs. Davis Rhodes; Assoc. Supt., Mrs. James Tuttle. 
BEGINNER I DEPT.: Superintendent, Mrs. Wiliard Jennings; Assoc. Supt., Mrs. Raleigh Long. 
NURSERY II DEPT.: Superintendent, Mrs. J. L. Lamb, Sr.; Assoc. Supt., Mrs. Walter Cohoon. 
NURSERY I DEPT.: Superintendent, Mrs. Melick Williams; Assoc. Supt., Mrs. Donald Myers. 
CRADLE ROLL DEPT.: Superintendent, Mrs. C. D. Johnston, Jr. 
EXTENSION DEPT.: Superintendent, Mrs. Joe Stokes. 

TRAINING UNION 
GENERAL OFFICERS: Director, Mrs. W. B. Riddick; Secretary, Mrs. C. M. Ashley. 
YOUNG PEOPLE'S UNION: Mr. and Mrs. Reid Overman. 
INTERMEDIATE UNION: Mr. and Mrs. Abe Siemens. 
JUNIOR UNION: Mrs. A. E. Maddox, Miss Octavia Jones. 
PRIMARY AND BEGINNER UNION: Mrs. W. L. Winslow, Mrs. Willard Savin, Mrs. Gordon Hayman. 

WOMAN'S MISSIONARY UNION 
President, Mrs. E. A. Swain; 1st Vice-Pres., Mrs. Wilbur West; 2nd Vice-Pres., Mrs. T. M. Chesson; Sec, 
Mrs. C. R. Sadler; Treas., Miss Annie Blount; Day W.M.S. Pres., Mrs. Carlyle Horner; Night W.M.S. Pres., 
Mrs. Wilbur West; Day W.M.S. Sec, Mrs. C. R. Sadler, Night W.M.S. Sec, Mrs. M. E. Croley; Day W.M.S. 
Pianist, Mrs. Reid Overman; Night W.M.S. Pianist, Mrs. M. W. Grissom; Committee Chm: Community Mis- 
sions, Mrs. W. A. Hoggard, Jr., Mrs. Ray Jones, Jr.; Prayer, Mrs. C D. Johnston, Mrs. W. H. Davis, Mrs. 
Francis O'Leary; Mission Study, Mrs. Cecil Basnight; Stewardship, Mrs. W. W. Garrett; Social & Flowers, 
Mrs. Calvin Pritchard; Program, Mrs. T. M. Chesson, Mrs. W. B. Riddick; Nominating, Mrs. S. G. Etheridge; 
Circles, Mrs. Reid Overman, Mrs. L. S. Jones, Mrs. J. H. LeRoy, Mrs. T. C. McKimmey, Mrs. J. F. Tuttle, 
Mrs. W. W. Garrett, Mrs. Ray Jones, Sr., Mrs. T. M. Chesson, Mrs. Cecil Basnight; Youth Directors: 
Y.W.A., Mrs. M. W. Grissom; G.A., Mrs. W. L. Winslow; Sunbeams, Mrs, T. C. McKimmey. 

251 



CHAPTER XXVIII 

Mission Points Other Than Daughter Churches 

Dry Point (Riverside Avenue) 

As has already been stated the Dry Point (Riverside Avenue) 
chapel was erected simultaneously with the North Road Street chapel. 
Although, the idea of a mission Sunday School on North Road Street and 
the raising of money to buy a lot and build a chapel on North Road 
Street came nearly three years before the one on Dry Point. First refer- 
ence to it was on June 4, 1899 "On motion a committee of five is ap- 
pointed to take into consideration the advisability of securing a lot on 
Dry Point ..." The committee consisted of E. F. Aydlett, J. R. Pinner, 
C. W. Stevens, W. H. Weatherly, Jr. and J. F. Snell. On June 11 the 
committee reported "that we can secure a lot on Dry Point . . . for 
$300.00 and recommend that we build two chapels just alike, 48 x 36 at 
a probable cost of $1500.00 for the two, furnished; which, together with 
the lot on Dry Point will aggregate some $1800.00 to $2000.00 . . . Com- 
mittee continued to get more definite estimate as to the cost of the 
chapels and to further consider the desirability of any changes in local- 
ity." On June 25, 1899 subscriptions were taken aggregating $814.00 and 
the committee was "requested to canvass tlie Church for more ..." The 
committee reported on August 6 "the lot on Riverside too small . . . 
that adjoining lot can be secured at an additional cost of $125.00 and 
recommended its purchase." The committee was on motion instructed to 
carry out its recommendation. 

On March 18, 1900 the two chapels committee reported: "First, 
that we purchased the lot on Riverside Avenue as heretofore reported 
and the deeds are herewith reported and the deeds are herewith filed 
showing the description. Second, that we have erected two chapels as 
requested, one on the lot on North Road Street and one on Riverside 
Avenue at a cost of $2638.69. Third, that the houses cost the same each 
and are exactly alike except the tower on the one on North Road Street 
is somewhat higher and cost $5.00 more ..." 



25^ 



April 4, 1900. A committee consisting of J. D. Sykes, George W. 
Tvviddy, W. K. Carter, F. F. Cohoon and W. T. Love, Sr. were appointed 
to have oversite of the Riverside mission, but just when the Sunday 
School was organized is not of record. George W. Twiddy was its first 
Superintendent. On May 6, 1900 "Brother Sykes was granted the use of 
twelve more chairs" which indicated that the school was in progress and 
had been for some time. Then on October 28 Rev. Dennis Harris was 
secured to preach at the mission every Sunday night for $250.00 a year. 
On December 2 the State Mission Board was requested to assist with 
$150.00 of this amount. Harris remained there through 1904, probably 
longer but we cannot say for sure. 

The Church having installed electric lights granted the mission 
use of one of its two kerosene-burning chandeliers - the other one going 
to the North Road Street mission. 

The mission prospered for five or sL\ years and on January 5, 1902 
J. G. Gregory, Superintendent, reported an enrollment of 153 and ten 
teachers and officers, a far greater portion of whom were young boys and 
girls. "This is a great stimulus," he said, "to encourage a vigorous prose- 
cution of the work." He appealed for consecrated men to help with the 
work. He reported "they had raised since March 1, 1901 for literature, 
sexton, fuel $41.41, organ $75.00, balance on seats $50.00, chairs $35.00, 
lamps S15.00 and entertainment $16.00. 

However, sailing was not always smooth. Even in 1902 there ap- 
pears to have been some discussion among the Church membership that 
the mission should form a union with the Riverside Baptist Church, three 
or four miles down the river in the country. This may be an indication 
that some were tiring of responsibility and were looking for an excuse 
to be relieved, because the location of the chapel was certainly much 
nearer to this Church than it was to the Riverside Baptist Church three or 
four miles away. It is understandable that at the conference on Decem- 
ber 28, 1902 Mr. Harris, the minister, and others were present and stated 
"we cannot advise a union of the work with Riverside Church." 

By July 2, 1905 the attendance and interest had diminished and the 



253 



supervising committee reported "the work there as unsatisfactory - the 
school having practically gone down, and Brother W. N. Gregory re- 
signs as Superintendent. On motion his resignation is accepted and he is 
requested to go over there this afternoon and notify any who may be 
tliere that the school will be discontinued until further notice." No reason 
was gi\'en for the poor attendance and nowhere in the minutes can be 
found any clear reason for the work "going down." However, some have 
told the author that the workers and others who attended over there were 
also faithful attendants here at the Church on Sunday mornings and 
they simply grew weary of spending all of their leisure Sunday time in 
two Sunday Schools plus the preaching services. There seemed to be not 
enough others over there to run the Sunday School independently. 

It is very possible though that on the afternoon of Sunday, July 2, 
1905 there were more present than Mr. Gregory expected and he or some 
other person appointed as Superintendent continued or soon reorganized, 
because J. G. Gregory in his summary of activities of the Church for the 
year 1907 states "that the three Sunday Schools (Presumably, the Main 
Sunday School, the one on Riverside and the one on Parsonage Street, 
organized in the meantime) are doing a great work. 

However, the interest on Riverside soon waned again and the work 
was abandoned because the minutes of November 25, 1908 begins a 
serious unpleasantness between the Church and Blackwell Memorial 
over the proposed sale of the Riverside property which would indicate 
that the work had been discontinued for some time. Mr. M. N. Sawyer, 
who as a member of this Church before his transfer to Blackwell Memor- 
ial, had probably contributed liberally to the mission, and objected to 
the sale of the property on the grounds that the donors had contributed 
for the purchase of the land and erection of the chapel to be used for no 
other purpose than to operate a mission somewhere in the city. The 
minutes reveal rather bitter correspondence between the two churches. 
It appears that since this Church had abandoned the mission and the 
property was not being used, Blackwell Memorial was desirous of at- 
tempting its revival. Whereupon, the First Church offered to lease or 
loan the property for ten years with the privilege of fifteen, but since the 

254 



Church originated the mission and held title to the property, it was 
specified in the proposed terms that it should at all times be given full 
credit for what it had done; and in case of the organization of a church 
there, this Church should be given full credit for having established the 
first Sunday School and preaching station. These terms were rejected 
by Blackwell Memorial. 

No further reference to the property or former mission is found 
until 1914, except for $14.40 collected as rent in 1913. It was sold in 1914 
to B. F. Swindell and wife, Curilla, for $750.00 and the proceeds went to 
pay a $400.00 note in the bank, insurance and a $200.00 balance on the 
pastorium debt. Thus ended the project so far as the First Church was 
concerned. 

Seven years later Blackwell Memorial again became interested in 
reorganizing the mission and, led by E. F. Aydlett and S. S. Davis, Sr., 
purchased the property and on April 10, 1921 organized the present 
Calvary Baptist Church. The chapel continued to be used by the Church 
until April, 1949 when it accidentally burned. Before the end of the year 
the present frame building on the same lot was sufficiently completed 
that services were begun in it. 

Parsonage Street and Factory Avenue Mission 

Exactly when the mission began we do not know. First reference 
to it is in the minutes of February 4, 1906 when the Church adopted a 
recommendation from the Deacons to "Contribute $500.00 for State Mis- 
sions and that we employ a man to take charge of the work on Factory 
Avenue. Also, that we purchase a lot in the factory district, move the 
building from North Boad Street (The old Blackwell Memorial chapel) 
to it and sell the North Boad Street lot. The purchase money to be used 
to pay $500.00 balance due on the $600.00 borrowed September 11, 1904 
and given to Blackwell Memorial." It appears from the decision "to 
employ a man to take charge of the work on Factory Avenue" that the 
work was already in progress on February 4, 1906. In this same confer- 
ence a committee was authorized to purchase the southwest corner of 
Parsonage Street and Factory Avenue from J. C. Spence for $150.00. The 



255 



North Road Street chapel had been vacant until now except on July 2, 
1905 the Primitive Baptists were granted permission to hold a meeting 
in it. Being moved to Parsonage Street in 1906 for use of an apparently 
already organized mission Sunday School, the lot on North Road Street 
was sold to A. T. West. The next year extensive repairs were made to the 
chapel. 

The man to take charge of the mission referred to above turned 
out to be Rev. W. R. Haight. He was still there on September 2, 1908 
as was noted in conference on tliat date: "Brother Haight is preaching 
at the Parsonage Street chapel every Sunday night. He was the only 
minister employed for the mission as far as the minutes reveal except 
for a short time that W. J. Crowson preached. Haight was also pastor 
of the Berea Church and a member of the First Church and on Decem- 
ber 11, 1912 he and his family were granted letters to unite with the 
Belhaven Church where he went as pastor. 

Mrs. Grace Coley remembers that Mr. John M. Bell was the first 
Superintendent of the mission Sunday School and that her father, Charles 
H. Sanderlin, was Superintendent for about three years during which 
time he missed only three Sundays. Someone has mentioned the name 
of Mr. Maccabee Tucker who served for a while. But we do not know 
the order in which these men served. Church minutes reveal tlie ap- 
pointment of only one person, that was J. B. Stanley appointed on March 

4, 1908. 

Just how long the mission was operated is uncertain. At the De- 
cember 11, 1912 conference the chapel was to be painted which may 
or may not indicate that the Sunday School was running at that time, but 
at this conference upon recommendation of the Deacons it was voted to 
discontinue the Sunday night services after December the 31st. Some 
time between tliis date and November 5, 1919 the project was abandoned, 
but for what reason the minutes give no clues whatsoever. On November 

5, 1919 it was '^brought to the attention of the Church that the Disciples 
of Christ wanted to use the chapel for religious services and on motion 
permission was granted until such time as we have need for it." On 



256 



December 14, 1919 the Disciples having made an offer of $1,250.00 the 
Trustees were authorized to pass title to the property for that price. 
The Disciples (First Christian Church) still use the chapel as its sanctuary 
but are in tlie process of fund raising in order to replace it with a new 
sanctuary in the near future. 

Thus, the First Baptist Church abandoned another project which 
later being espoused by others developed into an active Church and is 
today doing a magnificent job in the kingdom of God. The Church may 
have been justified in its abandonment of this mission, but since it had 
to be reorganized by another denomination, it happened to be one 
about as close to Baptist in doctrine and polity as any that could be 
found; for that denomination has a Baptist background. The elder Camp- 
bell, its founder, was first a Baptist and was Clerk of his Association. 
But he thought that the Church should bear the name Disciples rather 
than Baptists and his idea bore fruit. 



257 



CHAPTER XXIX 

Missions and Benevolences 

The State and Southern Conventions were already organized and 
their programs well under way before our first available minutes begin. 
However, we have every reason to believe the Church to have been in 
accord with them and supported them from the beginning as well as the 
average church of its strengtli. Only one instance recorded in our min- 
utes indicate otherwise: It appears that in 1889 the district associations 
sought pledges from the local churches through their delegates for vari- 
ous causes espoused by the conventions; and on May 9, 1889 "On motion 
the delegates to the Association be instructed not to make any pledges 
for State Missions." We can assume one of two reasons, or a combination 
of the two, for this negative attitude. One is that on October 27, 1888 
while Dr. J. L. White was pastor the Church requested $200.00 from 
State Missions to apply on pastor's salary and there is no record of 
whether or not the request was granted. It possibly was not - the pastor 
left the next January, having been with the Church only six months. 
Assuming this to be true, it could be the reason for not pledging for 
State Missions that year. The other possible reason was tliat the Church 
was in the midst of building the present sanctuary and did not feel 
financially able. However, even if there was cause to feel peeved at the 
State Mission Board, it was soon forgotten because on November 10, 1889 
"On motion the pastor, C. A. G. Thomas, be allowed to pledge $10.00 
for State Missions." The next year "E. F. Aydlett made a statement of 
the proceedings of the Association (Probably an appeal) and on motion 
the Church pledge $30.00 for Foreign Missions and $20.00 for State Mis- 
sions." 

Gifts by the Church as listed below are listed in six classifications 
as shown from 1857 to the present time. 

1. Local charities, not including preaching missions and branch 
churches which are given in other chapters. March 23, 1873 "Motion to 
take collection at each cjuarterly meeting for the poor." In those days 



258 



the Church had preaching once a month and every third month quarter- 
ly conference and communion was held on Saturday before the preaching 
Sunday. The collection was taken following the communion. When the 
Church went to full time preaching it subsequently adopted once a 
month communion services, and on October 26, 1889 it was decided to 
likewise take the collection once a month following the communion 
service. In later years the ushers stood in the vestibule with the collect- 
ion plates as tlie congregation filed out and received whatever offerings 
the people chose to give. This plan was discontinued several years ago 
when it was decided best to include an amount each year in the church 
budget for tliat purpose, which for the fiscal year 1960-61 is $250.00. 

The entry of July 25, 1885 is interesting. "To establish a Charity 
Fund to be turned over to one of tlie deacons as Treasurer." This was in 
accord with the original duties of deacons. 

2. Associational missions. In the early days, fifth Sunday Union 
Meetings (The churches of Pasquotank, Camden and Currituck counties 
constituted the Eastern Union) as well as Associations and Conventions 
sought to lead the churches in co-operative missions and benevolences. 
On April 15, 1866 "Dr. R. R. Overby (Pastor) reported the Union Meeting 
had devised a plan to raise an amount for benevolences and requested the 
Church to adopt it, which plan was that each church raise a dollar per 
member. Adopted." 

December 25, 1880 "Raised by collection to help build a Baptist 
Church at Pantego, Beaufort County, $4.31," and on October 23, 1892 
"On motion a collection was taken for the benefit of Dr. R. R. Overby's 
new church at Indiantown amounting to $15.00." June 18, 1905 "The 
Church was apportioned $70.00 on building at Manteo." This apportion- 
ment was probably by the Union Meeting or Association - could have 
been the State Mission Board. Also, the minutes of March 6, 1907 show 
$10.00 given to Manteo. 

September 30, 1906 "Pledged $100.00 to Riverside church build- 
ing," and on April 7, 1909 "E. M. Stevens asked to take in hand the 
matter of raising money to help build at Swan Quarter, arranging with 



259 



the Ladies (Ladies Aid Society) to have lawn parties, festivals or w^hat- 
ever manner they see fit to help raise money." At the same conference 
"J- H. LeRoy, Sr., loaned tlie steamer, Virginia, for an excursion from 
which $83.11 was netted for the Swan Quarter work." 

The above quotations tend to show that the Church readily re- 
sponded with collections, etc., though sometimes in small amounts, to 
tire needs of struggling churches within the bounds of the Association. 

In later years there were not only many special collections but 
specified days for certain causes, so much so that a few years ago the 
Church decided the better way, except in very rare instances, was to 
adopt a unified budget and include an amount for each and every cause 
of the Church and its Association and Conventions. Then special col- 
lections became almost completely taboo in the First Baptist Church. 

In 1947 the Association employed its first full time missionary 
later titled Promotional Secretary and the Church joined in the support 
of that program. It has consistently co-operated in its promotion to the 
present time and has $600.00 in the 1960-61 fiscal budget for it which 
is considered to be our proportionate share of the Program's annual cost. 

3. State. Home and Foreign Missions. Luther Rice was in our 
Church on May 16, 1828 when the Association met with us. Our minds 
should be refreshed concerning this pioneer missionary and his co- 
adventurer, Adoniram Judson. The two sailed for India as Congregational 
missionaries in 1812, but on the long voyage, they were converted to 
the Baptist faith by reading the New Testament. Cut off from Congre- 
gational support because of their new faith, tlie men turned to the Bap- 
tists for aid. Judson stayed in India and Rice returned to America to 
raise funds. To meet this opportunity, the Baptists of the United States 
formed the Triennial Convention with headquarters in Washington, D. C. 
Rice, under its auspices traveled among the churches and associations 
preaching foreign missions and raising funds for their promotion. The 
two pioneer missionaries should never be forgotten by Baptists. 

February 3, 1866 "Brother Phillips preached for us and was agent 



260 



for foreign missions. A collection was taken and $36.00 was raised for 
the object." 

June 27, 1874 "Resolved that every member of tliis Church be 
requested to contribute sometliing monthly to each of the different ob- 
jects of benevolence recommended by the Baptists State Convention." 

May 26, 1877 ". . . raise at least ten cents per member during 
1877 for State and Foreign missions, according to the request of the 
Corresponding Secretary, J. B. Richardson." 

The 1880 Associational minutes reveal the Church had given dur- 
ing the previous year only $3.48 for foreign missions. The 1881 minutes 
reveal $2.78 to State Missions and $3.50 to Foreign Missions. 1884 min- 
utes show $15.00 to State Missions and $6.55 to Foreign Missions. 1886, 
$5.00 to State Missions, $20.00 to Home Missions (First entry to Home 
Missions) and $25.00 to Foreign Missions. 

August 25, 1888 Church minutes ". . . to divide the year in four 
parts to consider the different objects of the Baptist State Convention 
and consider not more than two objects of the Convention any one 
quarter and that a committee be appointed to see each member and 
ask for voluntary contribution and that State Missions be considered 
during the present quarter." The 1891 annual report of the Treasurer, 
given on January 17, 1892 shows State Missions $50.05, Home Missions 
$37.69 and Foreign Missions $36.05. 

On February 2, 1892 "On motion the pastor, C. A. G. Thomas, 
is granted three weeks leave to make mission addresses before each 
Association as the State Convention would designate and that Brother 
J. Paul Spence or some other minister be asked to supply the pulpit." 

At the March 31, 1895 conference the Union Meeting had request- 
ed the Church to give to missions through the Union, but "the Moderator 
was directed to write to the Secretary of the Union Meeting that we shall 
be loyal to the State Board and shall continue to make our contributions 
direct to the Treasurer of the State Board." 

The 1898 Associational minutes reports State Missions $75.00, Home 

261 



Missions $40.00 and Foreign Missions $100.00. 1902 minutes report State 
Missions $125.00, Home Missions $212.00 and Foreign Missions $557.00. 
1905 State Missions $235.00, Home Missions $71.00 and Foreign Missions 
$358.00. 

On December 12, 1905 "Brother E. F. Aydlett reports that the 
deacons have instructed him to write to Brother WilHngham, Secretary 
of the Foreign Mission Board of the Southern Baptist Convention, sug- 
gesting that he try to be with us the last Sunday in this month and 
address us on Foreign Missions with the view of this Church making a 
contribution sufficient to sustain a missionary on the foreign field." 

Church minutes for February 4, 1906 show $500.00 pledged for 
State Missions. This was during the period of our local preaching mis- 
sions on Riverside and Parsonage streets and just after our North Road 
street mission had been organized as the Blackwell Memorial Church, 
and the Board was helping us with the Riverside and Parsonage street 
missions. 

Back to the Associational minutes again we find for 1908 State 
Missions $21.00, Home Missions $195.00 and Foreign Missions $192.00. 
1911 minutes show for Foreign Missions $406.00 and none for State and 
Home. 

4. Christian education. The earliest Church record of contribu- 
tion is July 21, 1860 "Brother J. D. Boushall, agent of Reynoldson Insti- 
tute, was allowed to take subscriptions," but no record was made of the 
amount subscribed. It is certainly obvious, however, that some amount 
was subscribed. Reynoldson Institute was a school for boys located in 
Gates County and sponsored by the Chowan Association. 

The next entry in Church minutes might be indicative of a nega- 
tive stand on Christian education but succeeding records indicate other- 
wise. April 21, 1877 "By motion the case of the scholarship for the en- 
dowment of Wake Forest College was considered, debated and vetoed." 
Only 21 months later, February 22, 1879 "W. C. Dawson, Elias Pritchard 
and Ida Bland to raise funds to assist Brotlier Brickhouse, now at Wake 



262 



Forest College." This was L. C. Brickhouse, a ministerial student and 
after ordination supplied our pulpit upon occasion and presided over 
business conferences. 

In order to show the year by year progress in as near chronological 
order as possible it was necessary to skip from Church to Associational 
minutes sometimes, and now we skip back to the Associational record. 
1882 minutes report the Church contributed $40.00 to Wake Forest Col- 
lege and $5.00 to the Sunday School Board. 1884, Educational Board 
$28.00 and Sunday School Board $5.00. These were probably boards of 
the State Convention. 1886, Educational Board $5.00 and Chowan Col- 
lege $10.00. 

Church minutes for January 17, 1892 reveal to Educational Board 
$15.00. November 19, 1905 "$25.00 contributed to the Student Loan 
Fund, Louisville Seminary." At a special conference on October 14, 1906 
"On motion the Church pledge $500.00 to the Seminary at Louisville 
towards the endowment of the Broadas Chair, (Dr. John A. Broadas) to be 
paid in annual installments of $100.00 each." April 26, 1908 "Agreed to 
pay to Chowan Baptist Female Institute (Now Chowan College) $100.00 
in addition to that already raised by Rev. M. A. Adams on his recent 
visit." December 1, 1918 "After an address by Dr. W. L. Poteat the 
Church accepted the opportionment of $4,600.00 to be paid in four years 
to the Million Dollar Campaign Fund for Wake Forest College." April 
25, 1920 "Approved the decision of the trustees of Chowan College to 
move the institution and our messengers to the Association are instructed 
to urge the claims of Elizabeth City as a suitable location for the college." 

5. Orphanage. Here the Association minutes had to be consulted 
previous to the adoption by the Church of the unified budget. 1886, 
$20.00; 1912, $200.00; 1920, $412.42; 1931, $367.76; 1940, $330.98; 1950, 
$1,131.46; 1960-61 our contribution is not designated but is included in 
the Co-operative Program. 

6. $75,000,000.00 Campaign and the Co-operative Program. To 
raise $75,000,000.00 was by far the most auspicious undertaking of South- 
ern Baptists up to that time and the part this Church was to play was. 



263 



too. This was in 1919 and on July 6 our pastor, Dr. B. C. Henning, re- 
signed to become its Assistant Director. Walter L. Small was made Chair- 
man to direct the campaign in this church. The quota was $27,500.00 and 
between October 1 and December 31 tlie Church went "over the top" 
with $33,000.00 subscribed. 

The Co-operative Program was, and is, a well organized plan 
of the Southern Baptist Convention whereby local churches may give 
to all the Convention causes and be assured that it will be used where 
it is needed tlie most; that our giving may not be lopsided to the enhance- 
ment of some causes while others go neglected. Each church, however, 
is left to decide how much it will give through the Program and how 
much it will designate for each given cause. As, for example, the Lottie 
Moon offering each Christmas which has always been designated by 
each Church. At tliis point digression is in order tliat we may refresh 
our minds on the history of this offering and that dedicated missionary, 
born in our neighboring State of Virginia on December 12, 1840. She 
was converted under the preaching of that great preacher and scholar, 
Dr. John A. Broadus, in 1859 and went to China in 1873. In 1888 Miss 
Moon suggested that Baptists make a Christmas offering that year for 
foreign missions and enough money was contributed to send tliree ad- 
ditional missionaries. We do not know just when this Church made its 
first Lottie Moon offering but it must have been soon after, if not in 
1888. The offering reported for the year ending September 20, 1960 was 
$2,180.00. 

Miss Moon spent 14 years in China before her first furlough, and 
after 40 years there, much of the time giving her meager salary to feed 
starving Chinese, she became so undernourished herself that it was 
necessary to return to the United States for treatment. En route she be- 
came so ill that her ship docked in Japan where, perhaps Providentially, 
on December 24 (Christmas eve) she died. 

This bit of history is given not to emphasize foreign missions more 
than other segments of Kingdom work, but . . . Well, may there ever 
be a Lottie Moon offering. 



264 



It has worked very successfully through the years but lately, 
some of our leaders are becoming concerned about growing designations 
in contrast to lower contributions to the Program and in conclusion here 
is a spot check on how our Church has given through the Program in 
comparison to its designations: 

1925, Program $9,216.00 and designated $1,054. 1935, Program 
$158.00 and designated $883.00, the contrast being practically reversed 
in ten years. The marked contrast in total giving is caused by the uni\'er- 
sal financial depression in tlie country at that time and our heavy indebt- 
edness on the educational building. 1940, Program $473.00 and designat- 
ed $1,422.00. 1941, Program $599.00 and designated $1,718.00. 1942, Pro- 
gram $972.00 and designated $2,510.00. 1943, Program $1,349.00 and 
designated $3,012.00. 1945, Program $2,794.00 and designated $4,113. 
1955, Prog?-am $2,850.00 and designated $4,255.00. 1956, Program 
$3,338.00 and designated $4,797.00. 1959, Program $3,556.00 and desig- 
nated $4,797.00. 1960, Program $3,390.00 and designated $4,724.00. 

Our peak year for missions and benevolences was $10,270.00 in 
1925. That year gifts for local expenses were $17,122.00 - not too bad, 
viewed in contrast. What we should be concerned about is that for the 
fiscal year 1959-60 our gifts for local expenses were $37,078.00 while 
gifts for missions and benevolences were only $8,114.00. 



265 



CHAPTER XXX 

Baptist Training Union 

As early as February 18, 1864 there was interest manifested in 
spiritual guidance for young people in the Church. On this date "Recom- 
mend having prayer meetings in the different neighborhoods of the 
Church in order that young members of the Church may have somewhere 
to go instead of attending numerous sprees over which the Country seems 
to be running wild." As much as prayer is emphasized in our present day 
Baptist Training Unions, the meetings recommended in 1864 perhaps 
were far from the type of programs put on in our present-day meetings. 

Surely there was concern for young people from that time for- 
ward for the next several years, but there is no further record until 
January, 1890. A Sunday bulletin featuring the departure of the old year 
and the coming of the new, now owned by Mrs. R. C. Abbott, indicates 
that there was then and had been for sometime, organized young peo- 
ple's work. The pastor, Charles A. G. Thomas, states: "the Young People's 
Department is growing." This was not the Young People's Department 
of the Sunday School as we know it today - that department was not or- 
ganized until the pastorate of H. K. Wilhams (1919-1922) by Mrs. Will- 
iams and Miss Kate Wood, now Mrs. E. F. Aydlett, Sr. It was rather the 
Young People's Department of the Church. The above named bulletin 
carried the Sunday schedule on the fourth page and included the Sun- 
day School at 9:30 A.M. and the Young People's Department at 3 P.M. 
It did not name an\' officers nor did it indicate what type of program 
it would have. 

The next record we have is when the State Baptist Convention 
met here in November, 1893 and a committee on young people's organi- 
zations was appointed, who in turn arranged a State-wide meeting of 
churches and young people's societies for December 5, 1894 in Charlotte, 
the day before the State Baptist Convention was to convene. Dr. Calvin 
S. Blackwell, pastor, "soon recommended that the Church send delegates 
to that meeting and that it is the sense of this Church that young people's 



266 



organizations should be encouraged in all our churches within the limits 
and under the direction of the Church." Dr. Blaclcwell and brethren 
John Sykes, J. G. Gregory and W. S. Whitson were appointed delegates. 

About this time interest had become widespread among the 
churches and in 1894 tlie Southern Baptist Convention adopted and 
recommended to the churches a convention-wide program which it named 
Baptist Young People's Union. Appropriate literature soon began to roll 
off the press and the training program was well under way. The name 
was changed only a few years ago to Baptist Training Union which is a 
more inclusive name to include adult unions for tliose above the age 
generally recognized as young people. 

This Church had the honor of furnishing the Convention's first 
full time Director in the person of its pastor, Calvin S. Blackwell, Phd. 

On October 6, 1895 the Church in conference directed the annex 
"opened for a reading room for the public and the Young People's Union 
to compensate the janitor for his extra trouble." Unfortunately, we still 
have no record of the names of leaders nor type of programs of those 
early organizations except maintaining "a reading room for the public." 
None of our oldsters seem to remember much concerning those early 
activities of the young people's organizations. 

The earliest recollection found is that of D. M. Love who says 
that soon after Dr. B. C. Henning came here as pastor in 1914 he per- 
suaded him (Lo\'e) to become President and after his tenure Mrs. Love 
served for a while. The first record the Church made of officers was on 
January 6, 1923 when Mrs. Elizabeth Bright was elected as President. 

1924 Dr. S. H. Templeman's Church Annual shows J. P. Mercer, 
President, but the Associational minutes give Rapiel Lamb. 

1925 Church minutes show Miss Oceola West, President, but the 
Associational minutes give St. Claire Bailey. That year there was one 
senior and one junior Union with a total enrollment of 35 each. 

1926 Church minutes list Russell Evans, but tlie Associational 
minutes list Bernice Twiddy, President, and includes for the first time a 

267 



statistical table. The table shows one junior and one intermediate Union 
and 67 enrolled. 

1927 Associational minutes give Miss Vera Jennings, President. 
A senior Union had been added to the junior and intermediate of 1926 
but with a total enrollment of only 50. 

1928 Associational minutes list Miss Josie Gordon, President, with 

three Unions and 74 enrolled. 

1929 Church minutes show Mrs. I. A. Ward elected and the title 
is now Director. It had been felt that there should be a Director for 
the overall program and each Union had it's own President or Leader 
at the same time. Mrs. Ward served for two years and in 1930 she or- 
ganized one new Union, giving her four Unions with an enrollment of 89. 

1931. Rev. A. H. Outlaw, Director. Three Unions and 74 members. 

1932. No report. Outlaw does not remember who succeeded him. 

1933. No Director reported, but statistics show three Unions and 
40 members. 

1934. Miss Annabelle Abbott - three Unions, 30 members. 

1935. Miss Inez Cartwright - three Unions, 30 members. 

1936. Miss Dorris Cartwright - five Unions and 122 enrolled. 
This was the peak enrollment. 

1937. Selman Freeman - three Unions, 65 enrolled. 

1938-1940. Dr. E. H. Potts, Pastor, was the Director. In 1940 

he reported three Unions and 80 members. 

1941-1942. None reported. 

Januar\^ 6, 1942 - April 2, 1944 Miss Marie Roberts, in her capacity 
as our first paid Director of Young People's Work. Associational year 
ending July 31, 1943 she reported fi\e Unions and 65 members. 

1944 Miss Zelma Pamell (Later Mrs. W. H. Gossard), in her capa- 
city as Director of Young People's Work - three Unions and 58 members. 

268 



1945 - 1946 Miss Martha Ellen Barr (Later Mrs. Frank Stilwell), 
in her capactiy of Choir Director and Director of Young People's \\'ork. 
She reported for the year ending August 31, 1946 six Unions with 78 
members. Only one other year were there six Unions reported that of 
1939. This year she was relieved of Young People's Work to give her 
full time to the Ministry of Music. 

1947. No Director reported. Three Unions and 63 members re- 
ported. 

1948 Miss Vivian Kerbaugh, in her capacit\^ of Director of Young 
People's Work. She reported to the Association no Unions upon her ac- 
ceptance of the position but that she was in the process of reactivating 
them. 

1949 Miss Genevieve Royal, Director of Religious Education - 
three Unions and 87 enrolled. 

1950 - 1951. None. 

1952 Miss Jennie Lou Newbold. Director of Religious Education - 
five Unions and 83 enrolled. 

1953 - 1954. None. 

1955 - 1957 Mrs. A. E. Mattox. Volunteer Director. Her 1957 re- 
port was two Unions and 53 enrolled. 

1958 - 1960 Miss Anne W^ells, as Director of Religious Education. 
Her 1960 report was five Unions and 67 enrolled. 

We can see from the figures given that there is much to be desired 
in our training program, but our present system of reporting it will be 
easier for future historians to appraise to what extent that desire was 
achieved. 



269 



CHAPTER XXXI 

Educational Directors 

Having almost reached its peak in membership at the time, the 
Church in 1943 felt the need for a full time employee other than the 
pastor in tlie field of religious education to work with the leaders in the 
Sunday School, Baptist Young People's Union, Woman's Missionary So- 
ciety, etc. with the view of reaching greater goals. However, as a starter 
it was decided to combine this work with that of Financial Secretary- 
Treasurer of the Church. 

Miss Marie Roberts of the First Baptist Church, Charlotte, North 
Carolina, was employed and, although she was not given full time em- 
ployment in her chosen field of religious education, she was the first 
person employed by the Church to do that type of work; and for that 
work her title was Director of Young People. She was here from January 
6, 1943 to April 2, 1944 when she resigned to take a full time position 
in religious education in her home Church in Charlotte. 

April 23, 1944 - December, 1944 Miss Zelma Parnell was employ- 
ed to succeed Miss Roberts but with the additional task of being Choir 
Director. Her salary was $125.00 per month. Soon after her marriage to 
William H. Gossard, Jr. she resigned. 

June, 1945 - July, 1947 Miss Martha Ellen Barr. She succeeded 
Mrs. Gossard in the full capacity of Educational Director-Choir Director- 
Financial Secretary. However in July, 1947 when she was relieved of 
educational and financial secretarial work to give her full time to the 
ministry of music. 

March, 1948 - March, 1949 Miss Vivian Kerbaugh who also as- 
sumed the duties of Financial Secretary. 

September, 1948 - June, 1950 Miss Genevieve Royal, Educational 
Director-Financial Secretary. Resigned to marry Kenneth Green. 

June, 1951 - September, 1952 Miss Jennie Lou Newbold, our 
first full time Director of Religious Education. Resigned to marry Lewis 
Lee. 

270 



August, 1955 - December, 1956 Miss Shirley McLean, who on 
May 13, 1956 married our Minister of Music, Rev. R. Dowd Davis, and 
resigned to accompany him to Southeastern Theological Seminary, Wake 
Forest, North Carolina. 

1957 Rev. Richmond Hogan who also assumed tlie duties of 
Minister of Music. He was here only a few weeks when he had a relapse 
of a serious illness and returned to his home. 

1957 (Summer) Miss Betty Jordan, Educational Director. 

June, 1958 - December, 1960 Miss Anne Wells, full time Director 
Religious Education. Resigned to take a similar position in her home 
Church, The First Church in Wallace, North Carolina. 



271 



CHAPTER XXXII 
Daily Vacational Bible School 

As far as we know the first Daily Vacation Bible School was con- 
ducted by a Mrs. Walker Hawes of the Epiphany Baptist Church in 
New York City in 1898. She called it the Every Day Bible School. By 
1916 the movement had spread to many countries and in 1922 Dr. Robert 
Boville organized the World Association of Vacation Bible Schools. 
Southern Baptists began active promotion of the schools in 1924 when 
Dr. Homer L. Grice came to the Southern Baptist Sunday School Board to 
be Director of the work; and it has since that time been under the lead- 
ership of the Southern Baptist Sunday School Board. 

First reference to the program in the Chowan Association is in 
the 1925 minutes, and was made in connection with the Sunday School 
Report by K. C. Horner, W. M. Hollowell and C. W. Hood: "We should 
give our influence and aid in establishing Daily Vacation Bible Schools. 
Several such schools should be held annually in our Association . . . This 
new movement is worthy of our best efforts." In 1926, still given by the 
Committee on Sunday Schools: "The Sunday Schools are not giving ade- 
quate Bible teaching. The Daily Vacation Bible School will give more 
of this during morning hours of four weeks than we now give in a year 
in Sunday School." 

In 1927 the Association for the first time reported Vacation Bible 
Schools: Elizabeth City First, Blackwell Memorial and Corinth. How- 
ever, our records reveal that our first school was in 1925 and was "pro- 
moted by Mrs. S. E. Leigh, Mrs. M. P. Jennings and Mrs. R. L. Garrett 
after they had attended a Sunday School conference at Meredith College, 
in Raleigh." We have no record of attendance or enrollment. 

There seems to be no record of a school in 1926, altiiough we 
would not deny that there was one held. 

1927. The Associational minutes show an enrollment of 131 and 
an a\ erage attendance of 83. Name of Superintendent unknown. 

272 



( 



1928 Superintendent unknown. Enrollment 212, average attend- 
ance 170. 

1929 - 1930. No record, either Church or Association. 

1931 Rev. G. H. Payne, Pastor, Superintendent. Enrollment 121, 
Average attendance 89. 

1932. No record. 

1933 Rev. J. C. Wicker, Pastor, Superintendent. Enrollment 170, 
average attendance 117. 

1934 - 1945 Dr. E. H. Potts, Pastor, Superintendent, except for 
1939 there seems to be no report. Enrollment and average attendance is 
not of record except for: 

1936, enrollment 157 and average attendance 106. 

1940, enrollment 173 and average attendance 140. 

1945, enrollment 89 and average attendance 80. 

1946 - 1947 Mrs. R. L. Garrett, Superintendent. Enrollment not 
of record. 

1948 Miss Vivian Kerbaugh, Educational Director, Superintendent. 
Enrollment 191, average attendance 160. 

1949 Rev. W. W. Finlator, Pastor, Superintendent. Enrollment 
202 average attendance 160. 

1950 Miss Genevieve Royal, Educational Director, Superinten- 
dent. Enrollment 164, average attendance 150. 

1951 - 1953 Miss Jennie Lou Newbold, Educational Director, Su- 
perintendent. Enrollment and average attendance not of record. 

1954 Mrs. W. R. Sawyer, Superintendent. Enrollment not of record. 

1955 Mrs. D. E. Edge, Superintendent. Enrollment 147, average 
attendance 120. 



273 



1956 Mrs. Dowd Davis, Educational Director, Superintendent. 
Enrollment not of record. 

1957 Mrs. Delbert D. Dudley, Superintendent. Enrollment 222, 
average attendance 188. 

1958 Mrs. Francis O'Leary, Superintendent. Enrollment 183, aver- 
age attendance 156. 

1959 - 1960 Miss Anne Wells, Educational Secretary, Superinten- 
dent. 

1959 enrollment 191 and average attendance 191. 

1960 enrollment 172 and average attendance 172. 

The original planners of Daily Vacation Bible Schools held them 
for a period of four weeks, five days a week. But this did not continue 
for long. By the time our Church organized its first school, few churches 
held them for longer than two weeks, five days a week, including our 
own. Now the Church has dropped to only eight school days. 

At first the schools were only primary and junior age children but 
in 1948 the intermediate age was included; and now the school includes 
nursery age through intermediate. 



274 



CHAPTER XXXIII 

The Baptist Brotherhood 

The idea of a missionary organization for men originated in the 
mind of a businessman by the name of John B. Slemen while attending 
a meeting of a Student Volunteer Convention in Washington, D. C. on 
March 2, 1906. He was so imbued with the idea of a laymen's movement 
for world evangelism that he called a group of Christian laymen to meet 
on November 15, 1906 in New York City. An organization was perfected 
with Samuel B. Capen of Boston as Chairman and J. Campbell White 
of New York as Secretary. It was interdenominational in scope. 

The next year Joshua Levering of Baltimore and Governor North- 
ern of Atlanta called a group of Baptists to meet in Richmond with the 
view of recommending such a movement to the Southern Baptist Con- 
vention for the promotion of its missionary endeavor. The group present- 
ed their recommendation to the Convention that year and it was enthus- 
iastically adopted and named The Laymen's Missionary Movement. The 
Convention in session at Houston, Texas in 1926 changed the name to 
The Baptist Brotherhood. 

The Brotherhood first began to take root in the Chowan Associa- 
tion in 1923 but there were no local organizations reported until 1936; 
and it was then sixteen years before an organization was perfected in our 
Church. It was organized in the fall of 1954 with 55 members and J. E. 
Corbett as its first President who with his successors have served as fol- 
lows: 

1954 - 1956, J. E. Corbett; 1956 - 1958, W. W. Garrett; 1958 - 1959, 
Dewey Wells; 1959-1960, R. W. Long and 1960-1961, R. C. Bunch. 

One of the functions of the Brotherhood is to foster and counsel 
the Royal Ambassadors, junior organization, in missionary endeavor, 
which previously was done by the Woman's Missionary Society along 
with the Girl's Auxiliary. However, our organization did not assume that 
responsibility until 1957. This phase of the work is now under the leader- 
ship of Mr. Bill Winslow. 

275 



The organization has sponsored a Cub Scout Troop, assisted in 
revival meetings, helped in a small way an Alcoholic's Anonymous or- 
ganization and have had programs on State, Home and Foreign Missions. 
Their studies of church administration, etc, provides a fountain source 
for deacons and other Church leaders. They meet around a banquet 
table once a month which provides an atmosphere of fellowship and 
social contact enjoyed by all the men. 

This organization has furnished the Chowan Association two en- 
thusiastic and capable Associational Presidents: Charlie Smith for the 
years 1955 - 57 and J. H. Moore for the year 1958. 



276 



CHAPTER XXXIV 

Entertainment 

of 

Associations, Conventions, Etc. 

Baptist Brotherhood 

On Sunday afternoon April 3, 1944 the Association-wide Lay- 
men's meeting, forerunner of the Brotherhood Convention, was held 
here. R. L. Garrett and A. H. Outlaw, members of tliis Church, were 
President and Secretary, respectively. 

After the Convention was formally organized in 1954, this Church 
entertained it in its fourth annual session. This was a dinner meeting, 
held in the High School cafeteria. Our own Charlie Smith was President. 

Baptist Training Union 

July 11, 1947 the fifth annual session of the Associational Conven- 
tion was held here; and on April 18, 1952 a Regional Convention con- 
sisting of representatives from several other Associations met with us. 

Chowan Association 

The Church has entertained the Association only seven times in 
its long history: 1812, 1822, 1850, 1872, 1900, 1932 and 1952. The 1952 
session was entertained jointly with tlie Blackwell Memorial Church, 
they entertaining the first day and this Church the second day. 

State Baptist Convention 

We have entertained the Convention three times. First, in 1893. 
Tlie minutes leading up to this occasion are interesting. On October 26, 
1889, while we were still in the old Meeting House preceding the present 
sanctuary. "The Pastor, C. A. G. Thomas, was instructed to extend an 
invitation to the Baptist State Convention to hold its next session with 
us, providing that body can make out with the old house that we now 
worship in." The next session was held in Shelby. Too many probably 
knew about our "old house." However, when the present new building 
was completed the Convention was again invited to meet with us: No- 

277 



vember 1, 1891 "On motion this Church unanimously invite the Baptist 
State Convention to hold its next session with the Church at Elizabeth 
City. Again, we missed out. The 1892 session was held in Raleigh. Ob- 
viously, the congregation was very anxious for the Baptist leaders of 
tlie State to meet here and see its new church building; and not willing 
to be out done, in conference on November 20, 1892 discussed inviting 
the Convention again. The matter was deferred until the next Sunday 
(Probably when there would be more people present). The next Sunday 
it was decided to invite the Convention for the 1893 session and "the 
delegates were instructed to use their influence in bringing the Con- 
vention to Elizabetli City." On December 18 when Dr. Blackwell, the 
pastor, returned from the Convention he reported that it had accepted 
tlie invitation to meet here in 1893. 

It met here again in 1904 and it appears that elaborate plans were 
made for it. In conference on November 6, 1904 "Upon motion the pas- 
tor is directed to have leaflets published for use on Sunday, December 11 
when the Convention will be here. The Deacons recommended the ap- 
pointment of the following committees: (a) to confer with other churches, 
(b) transportation, (c) entertainment, (d) arrivals of trains and (e) solicit- 
ing." Assistance from other churches would be needed, transportation 
of messengers from and back to tlie trains was a big problem in those 
days, many homes would be needed, but just what the committee on 
soliciting was to do we are not sure. However, with tliis array of com- 
mittees it is quite evident that every detail of welcoming and entertain- 
ing the visitors was taken care of. 

The next page is a self-explanatory duplicate of compliments dis- 
tributed to the messengers in attendance. 

Twelve years later, 1916 the Conventions met with us again but 
there is no record of details concerning entertainment, etc. 

By this time the Convention had become rather big and after- 
wards the problem of housing, entertainment, etc. increased by the year 
until today only a few churches have the facilities for taking care of so 
large a Convention. 

278 



t Bsptist 3t3t^ Oonvontion | 

t 5 

^ SEVEINTY-FOURXH SESSION J 

d El-tZAEElTH CITV, M. C. f| 

^ DEIC- TTH TO 11XH, 1904. J 



t 

i 
f 

4 

t 
5 



• / - 




5 

t 



1 COMPLIMENTS OF the: 

S TAR H EIEIL- 

4 EASTERN CAROLINA'S LEADING PAPER. 



279 



Sunday School Conventions 

April 23, 1886 "On motion the Church meet Brother John Ray 
and others here on Friday before the second Sunday in May next to en- 
gage in a Sunday School Convention." There are no details of the Con- 
vention recorded. 

March 26, 1935 the seventh annual session of the Associational 
Sunday School Convention met here and on March 6, 1945 it met with us 
again; this time our own pastor, Dr. E. H. Potts was recording Secretary. 
Another Convention was held here on September 28, 1958. 

Union Meetings 

Some members still remember the old fifth Sunday Union Meet- 
ings. The Association was divided into several districts and the churches 
of the respective districts met on fifth Sundays and the Saturdays before, 
mostly for inspiration and revival and doctrinal sermons. Little business 
was transacted. But the full time churches found it difficult to call off 
their fifth Sunday services in order to allow their ministers to attend 
the Union Meetings and it was probably largely through their influence 
that the meetings were discontinued. Although, some smaller Baptist 
groups - the Free Will Baptists, Primitive Baptists and tlie Disciples still 
hold them. Only one, as far as we know, of the Baptist Union Meetings 
is still existant and that is the historic Bertie Union of the West Chowan 
Association. 

We have record of the Elizabeth City Church entertaining the 
Union Meeting only three times: March, 1884, May, 1886 and December, 
1898. 

Vacation Bible School 

A Vacation Bible School Clinic was held here in April, 1952. 

Woman's Missionary Union 
The W. M. U. at one time included County meetings and while 
we are not sure, we believe the First Church has entertained the County 
meeting a few times. 

We have entertained the Associational meeting only three times: 
June, 1926 and March, 1949. The third time was a banquet in February, 
1952 for the purpose of organizing an Associational Young Woman's 
Auxiliary Council. 

280 



CHAPTER XXXV 

Memorial Gifts 

Mrs. Margaret Hollowell. Mrs. Hollowell was the first wife of 
Mr. C. W. Hollowell. Her will dated March 16, 1860, probated Septem- 
ber 16, 1864 and recorded in Book N, page 249 Pasquotank County 
Clerk's office reads in part: 

I give and bequeath to the Trvistees of the EHzabeth City Baptist Church, 
to be appHed by them to the support of the ministry of said Church, the sum of 
$60.00 annually. And in order fully to secure said sum annually, I direct my Executor 
hereinafter named to invest the sum of One Thousand Dollars of my funds in North 
Carolina State bonds that have several years to run before falling due - and when 
the said bonds shall fall due and be paid, I direct him to re-invest the same and in 
the same way and for the same purpose. 

Wlien the present sanctuary was erected the legacy, after de- 
ducting attorney's fee, was applied to the expense of its erection, and on 
Sunday morning April 26, 1891 in called conference it was decided: 

"On motion we put in tlie new Church a Memorial window in 
Memory of Sister Hollowell." The window was put in the Southeastern 
section of the vestibule where it remains to this day and reads: In 
Memoriam - Margaret Hollowell. In the same conference the Building 
Committee "was authorized by the Church to have imitation stained 
glass windows put in the tower of the new Church." Mrs. Hollowell also 
made a legacy to the Foreign Mission Board in Richmond, Virginia. 

Mrs. J. J. White, Sr. Bom June 20, 1859. Died September 6, 1935. 
A silver urn given by her children: Cecil R. White, Mrs. Cora 
WHiite Twiddy, Sidney W. White, Mrs. Carrie White Jenkins, Joseph J. 
White, Jr. and Mrs. Mattie White Rouse. Inscription: In Memory of our 
Mother, Martha Towe White, by her children, 1936. 

Mr. and Mrs. A. D. Bray. Mr. Bray born October 17, 1854 - died 
May 18, 1938. Mrs. Bray born March 14, 1860 - died June 8, 1940. The 
improvements made in the front vestibule of the Church. Given by Mr. 
and Mrs. C P. Harris, Sr., in 1943 as a memorial to Mrs. Harris' father 
and mother. 



281 



Mr. and Mrs. J. R. Pinner. Mr. Pinner bom March 2, 1862 - died 
August 28, 1918. Mrs. Pinner born December 10, 1861 - died December 
21, 1930. Brass altar candlesticks given by their children in September 
1951: Warren Pinner, Guy Pinner, Mrs. Amy Pinner Tillett, John Pinner, 
Joseph Pinner, Mrs. Ethel Pinner Alexander and Mrs. Kathryn Pinner 
Wood. 

Note: — The next ten items were given during the process of the 
complete renovation-remodeling of the present sanctuary and were dedi- 
cated at the time the sanctuary was rededicated - January 23, 1955. 

Rev. Q. T. Simpson, Sr. Born April 14, 1847 - died 1900. Brass 
altar vase given in 1954 by his children: Q. T. Simpson, Jr., and Mrs. 
W. A. McClendon. 

Mr. Robert F. Simpson. Born December 17, 1855 - died 1915; 

and 
Mr. Martin L. Simpson, Sr. Born February 1, 1855 - died May 

21, 1895. Brass altar vase given in 1954 by their daughters, Mrs. M. G. 

Wright and Mrs. H. S. Overman, respectively. 

Mr. Willis E. Leigh. Born October 29, 1897 - died November 22, 
1953. Carved corner cupboard in the reception room given in 1954 by 
Mrs. WUlis E. Leigh. 

Mr. Sidney G. Etheridge. Bom November 4, 1890 - died March 
14, 1952. Stained glass window in the chancel given in 1954 by Mrs. 
Sidney G. Etheridge. 

Mrs. Mary Sawyer Wright. Born November 16, 1886 - died 
February 18, 1953. Brass altar cross given in 1954 by her children: Mrs. 
T. C. Sawyer, Jr., and Jerry S. Wright. 

Mrs. Nora C. Jennings. Born September 5, 1881 - died February 
4, 1955. Walnut flower stand for the sanctuary in 1955 by her son, John 
T. Stevenson. 



282 



Mr. Thomas Russel Bland. Born June 18, 1824 - died February 
23, 1900. Walnut flower stand for the sanctuary, given in 1954 by his 
granddaughter, Mrs. H. S. Overman. 

Miss Jean Blanchard. Born December 13, 1949 - died July 13, 
1953. Silver flower urn given in 1954 by her parents. Dr. and Mrs. I. T. 
Blanchard. 

Mr. Simon E. Munden. Born January 22, 1872 - died December 
19, 1940. Walnut altar table made and given in 1954 by his son, W. J. 
Munden. 

Mr. W. T. Culpepper, Sr. Born June 11, 1884 - died June 11, 1945. 
The organ chimes given in 1954 by Mrs. W. T. Culpepper, Sr. 

Mr. T. O. Bundy. Born October 3, 1891 - died February 26, 1955. 
Communion cup receptacles placed on the back of the pews, given in 
1957 by Mrs. Bundy and their children: Odis Bundy, Mrs. Cora Bundy 
Barnes, Mrs. Doris Bundy Mitchell, and Mrs. Rosolyn Bundy Thomas. 



Other Special Gifts to be Remembered 

Mr. Jeremiah Murden, one acre of land on Knobs Creek on which 
to erect our first Meeting House August 30, 1783. See deed in chapter 
on Sanctuary. 

Mr. Charles Grice, an Episcopalian, the lot on which the present 
sanctuary stands. See deed of October 1, 1805 in chapter on Sanctuary. 

Mr. John Wilson on March 19, 1842 gave land, the description of 
which we quote from Rev. George F. Hill's Brief History of Christ Epis- 
copal Church Parish: 

March 19, 1842, John Wilson of Pasquotank County being desirous of ad- 
vancing the propagation of reHgion in the town of Elizabeth City recorded a deed 
for a parcel of land, during his life time, to become the property of the three churches 
then in Elizabeth City, upon the death of himself and his wife, Grace. The deed 
reads as follows: 



283 



Parcel of land sihiated in the town of Elizabeth City on Road or Main 
Street beginning at a point on sd. Street in the middle of the canal at the corner of 
Mansard lot and running down said canal at a distance of 208 ft., thence 104 ft. 
parallel with Road Street to a lot formerly belonging to A. Williams, thence to 
Road Street bounding sd. Williams lot and thence to final station, to the Trustees 
or Vestry of the three Churches now in Elizabeth City, viz., to the Vestry of the 
Protestant Episcopal Church, the Trustees or Vestry of the Methodist Church and 
to the Trustees of the Baptist Church, on the road running out Middle Street, near 
the town line, and their successors in office in equal shares to be disposed of for 
their several benefits. 

Mr. Louis Selig, local jeweler, gave a clock for the sanctuary in 
1891. 

Mrs. Jennie Weatherly and her mother, Mrs. Annie Hunter, some- 
time prior to 1893 gave the marble-top communion table which is still 
in use. 

Mr. Charles H. Sanderlin gave a pulpit Bible in 1908. 

Mr. and Mrs. Edmond Kite left their home on Maple Street to the 
Church. It was sold in 1937 for $850.00. 

Miss Eliza Pritchard who died in 1940 left real property to the 
Church which sold for $5,000.00. 

Mr. and Mrs. W. T. Love, Jr. gave the visual aid equipment in 
1944. Also a public address system including the chimes in the Church 
steeple. Moreo\'er, they gave an outdoor bulletin board which was used 
for sometime. 

Mr. Robert L. Griffin and Mr. Roland L. Garrett, in August, 1946 
gave the Bible now in use on the lectern in the sanctuary. 

Mrs. H, S. Overman made and gave two antependia for the lectern 
and pulpit in 1952. 

Mrs. Sallie Heath Boetcher gave the iron railings on the east side 
steps to the sanctuary in October, 1946. 

Mr. and Mrs. J. C. Abbott in Febmary, 1950 gave new collection 
plates. 

284 



Mrs. Harry W. Bundy gave two arundel prints for the reception 
room in 1954. And in October, 1960 she made and gave the minister's 
stole. 

Mr. Roland L. Garrett in 1955 gave the amplifying system for the 
Educational Building and the sanctuary, including the pulpit micro- 
phone and the earphones in some of the pews. 

Miss Marie LeRoy gave a communion plate in March, 1957. 

Mrs. Sidney G. Etheridge gave a communion plate in March, 1957. 

Miss Dorothy Gard gave the velvet altar cloth in 1960. 

Mrs. H. S. Overman in February, 1961 made and gave the Fair 
Linen as a tribute to Mrs. Estelle Simpson Wright for her love, loyalty 
and devotion to her Church through the years. 

Mrs. M. G. Wright, Mrs. Harry Bundy, Miss Dorothy Gard and 
Mrs. H. S. Overman in 1961 have given one clergy stole and two pulpit 
and lectern antependia - all in white, silk material and hand-made by 
Mrs. Bundy and Mrs. Overman. 



285 



CHAPTER XXXVI 

Miscellaneous 

Dedication of Parents and Little Children 

Our immediate preceding pastor, W. W. Finlator, conducted on 
Palm Sunday for a number of years a dedication service for parents and 
their young children. It was in no way to be confused with a christening 
as the following ceremony shows; and although it was an innovation 
in the First Baptist Church, it was heart warming and joyfully accepted. 
Following the service on Palm Sunday, April 3, 1955 a photograph was 
taken of the parents and children who participated in the dedication 
which is given on the next page. 

While soft music was being played, the parents with their child- 
ren gathered in front of the altar. The following scripture was read by 
the minister. 

And they brought young children to him, that he should touch them: and 
his disciples rebuked those that brought them. But when Jesus saw it, he was much 
displeased, and said unto them. Suffer the little children to come unto me, and for- 
bid them not: for of svich is the kingdom of God. Verily I say unto you. Whosoever 
shall not receive the kingdom of God as a little child, he shall not enter therein. And 
he took them up in his arms, put his hand vipon them, and blessed them. 

Mark 10:13-16 

The invocation by the minister: 

O God our Father, Who art the giver of life, we thank Thee for every 
manifestation of Thy love, and for these gracious words of Thy Son Who Himself, 
for love of us, did become a little child. We ask Thy blessing upon these parents 
as they dedicate this new life that Thou has entrusted to their keeping. Amen. 

The minister to the congregation: 

You who are gathered today in worship are privileged to witness the coming 
of these parents to dedicate their offspring to the tender care and keeping of God 
our Father, and to tlie love of the Lord Jesus Christ our Saviour. In so doing, they 
also rededicate themselves to the maintenance of a Christian home, where Christ 
shall be honored and the Word of God held in reverence. 

And to the parents: 

And you parents who come bringing your child . . . , as is fitting, to the 

house of the Lord to offer h . before God in a worship service, we pray with you 

that God's richest blessings may attend h on It journey through life. And may 

286 




287 



His blessings rest on you also as in all humility and singleness of heart you seek 

to retain and educate h . so that h shall grow even as Jesus grew "in wisdom 

and stature and in favor with God and man." 

Dedication 

Minister: Recognizing the dignity and responsibility of parenthood and of 
your dependence upon di\ine help for strength and wisdom to faithfully discharge 
the duties of parents, do you now present your child ... in dedication to God, seek- 
ing di\ine blessing and guidance for h life- 
Parents: We do. 

Minister: Having thus purposed in your hearts, do you in the presence of 
these witnesses solemnly covenant to strive, by precept and example, and using the 
many agencies of the church to train your child ... in love toward God and in a 
knowledge of His Son Jesus Christ our Lord? 

Parents: We do. 

Consecration 
Minister: And now, having presented your child ... in dedication to God, 
do you also desire to reconsecrate yoursehes to Christ and in the spirit of this 
covenant live exemplary lives, relying upon the grace of God to so commend Christ 
by your example? 

Parents: We do. 

Minister: Having heard these vows and sacred assurances, as a minister of 
Christ, I joyously and with earnest prayer, commend your child ... to the gracious 
keeping of God, our Heavenly Father. 

Your child will not remember this day; therefore tell h early of 

the covenant and the prayers made this day in h behalf. 

Prayer 

Our Father, let Thy blessing be upon th , child , and guide these 

parents we pray by Thy light and Thy truth, that in humbleness and sincerity they 
shall walk before Thee in righteousness with a sense of divine guidance all the 

days. Grant, we beseech Thee, the holiest desires of their hearts concerning th 

child Hear us as we together pray e\'en as our Lord taught us: (Then the 

parents joined the minister in the Lord's prayer). 

The hymn: Saviour, like a shepherd lead us. 

Much we need Thy tender care; 
In Thy pleasant pastures feed us, 

For our use Thy folds prepare: 
Blessed Jesus! Thou has bought us. 
Thine we are, 
was sung and certificates of dedication showing child's name, date and place of 
birth, names of parents and reading: Was brought to the House of the Lord by the 
parents and there dedicated to God. The certificates of dedication bore the date and 
pastor's signature. 



Doctrinal Difficulties 

The 1833 Associational minutes reads "Brethren John Harrell, 
James Delk (Delke), Malachi Corbell and Thomas Meredith were ap- 
pointed to visit the Church at EHzabeth City, with a view of aiding the 
brethren in the adjustment of their existing difficulties." At the 1834 
session of the Association the committee was discharged but there was 
no statement in the minutes of either session as to the nature or extent 
of the difficulties. It seems though, that it was of a serious nature en- 
dangering the very existance of the Church, to have the Association to 
take a hand in attempting to adjust them. Of course our minutes do not 
extend tliat far back, so we are left in the dark. 

However, if the writer may be permitted, he would hazard a 
guess which he feels might be the solution, at least one that might be 
of interest. The Kehukee, mother Association, had just six years previous 
declared itself against any form of Christian education - seminaries, Sun- 
day schools, etc.; and missionary societies or missionary efforts of any 
kind. Because, it said, they were man-made institutions, innovations of 
the devil; and that God would in his own way and time bring his elect 
to the light. 

The Chowan Association was then only seventeen years of age 
and was still having to combat Kehukeeism (Calvinism) within its own 
borders. Debates were many, long, and bitter at times. This, coupled 
with the fact that the committee to visit us consisted of all theologians 
(Ordained ministers) including Thomas Meredith, eminent leader in mis- 
sions and Christian education, founder of the Biblical Recorder and for 
whom our own Meredith College was named, leads us to the conclusion 
that the difficulties over which the Association was so much concerned 
were of a doctrinal nature. 

If this is true, we can thank Cod for the assistance given by this 
committee in keeping the Church on the right side and for our very 
existance today. Because if the trend had gone the other way and the 
Church had managed to live to this day, it would be comparable to the 



290 



few remaining Primitive Baptist churches that we know today, just wait- 
ing for the last breath of life to be drawn. 

Library 

From the earliest days of Sunda>" Schools, before the organization 
of the State and Southern Baptist Sunday School departments, what few 
Sunday Schools we had depended upon the Bible itself and a handful of 
books on varied religious subjects, because special Sunday School liter- 
ature was not published at that time. The 1831 Associational minutes 
show in the Clerk's digest of letters "The Church at Elizabeth Cit}^ ha\e 
a thriving Sunday School." Therefore, we have every reason to belie\e 
that we had a Library, be it ever so limited, as early as 1831. The few 
books were probably collected here and there and were donated by 
various interested individuals. The Library, as in most other churches, 
has always been in close relation to the Sunday School. 

The earliest actual record of a Library is the 1868 Associational 
minutes which reports a Sunday School with 200 \^olumns in its Library. 
The next actual record found was in Treasurer E. F. Aydlett's annual 
report for the year 1892. He reported $34.75 recei\'ed for the Sunday 
School Librar}'. October 6, 1895 "The Church in conference directed the 
annex (The west annex which we now call the old annex) opened for a 
reading room for the public and the Young People's Union to compen- 
sate the janitor for his extra trouble." No mention is made of the number 
of volumns or a librarian, but surely there must ha\e been a sizable col- 
lection and some person in charge. Mrs. Ethel P. Alexander remembers 
a collection of probably not more than 200 ^"olumns in a set of glass- 
front shelves located in one of the three Sunday School rooms to the 
north of the west annex, now torn down. But she does not remember the 
name of a librarian. Her earliest remembrance of this Library was around 
1905-1908. 

We have no more information on Library or anything pertaining 
to it until 1940. However, from the above fragments of information there 
is reason to believe tliere has been some library activity most of the time 
since 1831, at least since 1868. 

291 



In October, 1940 Mrs. E. F. Aydlett, Sr., established the Library 
that we know today and served as hbrarian that montli, when she was 
succeeded by Mrs. Etliel P. Alexander. Mrs. Alexander served until June, 
1947 when she resigned to prepare for the position which she now holds 
as librarian for the Pasquotank County Public Library. Then, Mrs. Aydlett, 
with the help of Miss Geraldine Hughes, took care of it until June, 1951, 
when Miss Gloria Wise was appointed and served until September, 1951. 
Mrs. D. D. Dudley served from October, 1951 to October, 1955. October, 
1955 - October, 1958, Mrs. Paul Wise. The fiscal year 1958-59, Miss Annie 
Blount. Mrs. Dudley was appointed again in October, 1959 and still serves. 
According to Mrs. Alexander, Miss Janet Haskett for a good many years 
served as a very loyal and efficient assistant in the Library, under a 
number of librarians. 

Mrs. Dudley states that the Library now has approximately 2000 
books on its shelves and a circulation of about 20 books per Sunday. Ex- 
penses has been included in the Church budget for the past 15 years 
which is about $100.00 per year. 

Prayer Meetings 

The traditional mid-week prayer meetings were probably non- 
existant in 1864 because on February 6 of that year it was "recommended 
the having of prayer meetings in the different neighborhoods of the 
members of the Church in order that young members of the Church may 
ha^•e somewhere to go instead of attending numerous sprees over which 
the Country seems to be running wild. 

The first reference to the regular mid-week prayer meeting as we 
have known it for many years, is in Pastor Charles A. G. Thomas' printed 
New Year's bulletin for 1890, in a sub-heading: Your Prayer Meeting. 
"Its presence in the church goes back to the upper room in Jerusalem 
when the disciples were together with one accord in pra\er and supplica- 
tion, and with his own presence Jesus blessed them. He meets with us 
now and blesses us. Will you not meet him every Thursday night and 
let him bless vou too? Come and receive his blessing." 



292 



How long the Church had been holding mid-week prayer meet- 
ings, we wish we knew. Unlike other churches in the City, the Baptist 
held the meetings on Thursday nights and this practice continued until 
June 9, 1898 when it was decided "Since other churches in the City hold 
their prayer meetings on Wednesday nights and would not change, our 
Church moved to hold prayer meetings on Wednesday nights in the 
future and not on Thursday nights." As far as we know it has been held 
on Wednesday nights ever since. 

Like most other churches who have tried to maintain mid-week 
prayer meetings, the attendance has not always been what it should 
have been; and within the recollection of many of us it has had to be 
discontinued during the summer months sometimes. Some churches, 
Baptist as well as other denominations, have discontinued them entirely. 
It is said that Dr. Sparks Melton, for many years pastor of Free Mason 
Street Baptist Church in Norfolk, Virginia, stated that "it was over a year 
after he discontinued his before any of the Deacons found out about it." 
But we praise God for the "faithful prayer meeting group" in this Church 
who by their loyalty and strong belief in prayer with those of kindred 
mind, have kept the mid-week prayer meeting alive except for very 
brief periods now and then. 

Purchasing 

For a few years in the memory of most of us the Church attempt- 
ed to systematize purchases for the Church by the appointment of com- 
mittees and finally an agent. The only records found was: First, on De- 
cember 28, 1930 when C. P. Harris, Sr., S. G. Scott and Mrs. R. C. Abbott 
were appointed a Purchasing Committee. Second, March 6, 1938 Mrs. 
S. G. Scott was elected Purchasing Agent and to "check all bills." 

Union Services with other Churches 

As stated in the chapter on Pastors, the first union service of 
record was when some of the other churches met with us to welcome 
our new pastor. Dr. J. F. Vines, on January 1, 1906. 



293 



On June 26, 1916, during the pastorate of Dr. B. C. Henning, it 
was decided to hold union services on Sunday evenings during the sum- 
mer months witli the Presbyterian, First Methodist and Episcopal 
churches. Usually these union services rotated. 

These union services were occasioned not only to promote good 
will between the churches, but because of the very poor attendance at 
each church during the hot summer evenings. It was believed that the 
four small groups of worshipers coming together would aggregate a 
fair congregation for the minister to preach to. Moreover, the plan gave 
the pastors some relief from the heat. 

The plan has been tried a number of times since - sometimes with 
good results. However, it eventually appeared that the few who usually 
attended began to drop out; and the attendance even at the union serv- 
ices was no larger than formerly in the individual churches. The reason 
for this? Probably because it gave an excuse to relax the loyalty that 
some felt to their own Church when it held separate services. One sum- 
mer, some twelve or fifteen years ago, in desperation we tried union 
vesper services in the open air, just before sundown. That did not help. 
This was during the pastorate of Dr. E. H. Potts and the next summer he 
led us to hold our own services which has been maintained since that 
time and the attendance most of the time has been even better than the 
entire attendance at some of the union services. 

Ever since this writer has known the Church, thirty-five years, it 
has co-operated with other churches and the Elizabeth City High School 
in union services for the baccalaureate sermon to the graduating classes. 

Ushers 

The first mention in Church minutes of ushers in our worship 
services was on September 27, 1884 when "Brother W. T. Love, J. Q. 
Etheridge, William Swain and James West were appointed." We may 
have had ushers before then, but there is no record of it. 



294 



The great host of dedicated and faithful men who have served 
through the years cannot be given too much praise and the vahie of their 
services cannot be over estimated. Many of us have visited a great many 
other churches and will join in saying that it makes a big difference how 
we feel when met by a courteous usher. Even in our own Church, no 
matter if we are here every Sunday and known by everyone else, it makes 
us feel much better to be "ushered" to our accustomed pew. They add 
dignity, interest and inspiration to the worship services. 

As far as we know we have had the services of ushers ever since 
the above date, 1884, and the present board consist of: 



Ashley, C. M., Chairman 
Bunch, R. C. 
Carter, W. K. 
Corbett, J. E. 
Culpepper, Levin 
Dudley, William 
Garrett, R. L. 
Garrett, W. W. 
Jones, Ray, Jr. 
Jones, Stancil 
Lancaster, T. B. 



Long, R. W. 
Miller, Karl 
Overman, Reid 
Rhodes, M. D. 
Savin, M. W. 
Scott, Selby 
Sherlock, L. E. 
Tarkenton, Hubert 
Toxey, M. N. 
Vann, C. R. 
White, Gerald 



295 



CHAPTER XXXVII 

Conclusion 

We have tried to include in tliis \'olumn, at least in some degree, 
the most important and fundamental aspects of the Church's history; its 
background, its progress and, something of what it is like today. 

It is impossible to list the thousands of names who have through 
the years been on our roll. We cannot name the hundreds and hundreds 
who have served on committees, served as departmental superintendents, 
group leaders, taught in the various phases of the Church's educational 
programs, served as class officers, played the piano, e^c. The number of 
hours, even days and weeks of time, given by the membership through 
the years for the advancement of tlie Lord's kingdom would be innumer- 
able. If we may paraphrase the words of John concerning the works of 
Jesus, there are so many people who have served well and they have 
achieved so many successes, which if they should be written, everyone 
I suppose that even the world itself could not contain the books that 
should be written. 

The writing of a church history, as writing the history of any 
institution from its origin to the present, is an activity which reflects 
change and progress. It produces interpretations of how we got where 
we are. But for change and progress there would be little or nothing to 
write about. If this Church had remained as it was first constituted; in 
its interpretation of free grace, its poor housing facilities, its lack of 
Christian education and missions, it would have within a few years been 
no more. In that case about all that could have been said in this volumn 
would have been: It was constituted, immediately became static and in 
a generation or two died, Amen. Some people think of Amen as being 
the end, and generally it is used at the end of a prayer or exhortation, but 
it literally means: So mote it be; and I am not unmindful of its true 
meaning in the above use of the word. Because a so-called church that 
is not willing to move ahead and advance the kingdom of God in the 
light and intelligence of each succeeding generation has no God given 
purpose for existance. 

296 



Our successors will see change and progress in the future, prob- 
abh' even more than our predecessors and we have seen - change and 
progress that we know not of now. Not that they will have to surrender 
principle or give up allegiance to the God of their fathers, may He for- 
bid. But they will practice principles laid down by Him and allegiance 
to Him in the light and wisdom of the days in which they li\e. The 
Church will stand the tests of time, survive, and give the historians in the 
far away tomorrow even more to write about than we can dream of, 
indeed something, we hope and pray, even more worthwhile to write 
about. 

The Church today is a far cry from the, perhaps no more than a 
score of members who banded together in co-operation with the mother 
Church and erected a crude little Meeting House on Knobs Creek where 
they worshiped for about twenty-three years. Since then the congrega- 
tion in increasing numbers has erected three other houses of worship, 
each being a decided improxement over the preceding one; and we have 
remodeled and furnished the present one which, though simple, is 
second to none in elegance and beauty. Yet those who erected the pre- 
ceding ones were equally proud in their day and time of them. Some 
walked the country paths through heat and cold, some rode on carts, 
some on buggies and surreys; first, to the little Meeting House on Knobs 
Creek, then into the village; and now for many years by automobile to 
this great sanctuary in the metropolis of the Albemarle Country, eager 
for the bread of life. 

To the untold hundreds who through its ministry have heard and 
accepted the in\'itation of a lo\ ing Heavenly Father to return to Him as 
a prodigal son to his father's household, it has been a New Jerusalem 
on earth, a foretaste of what He has in store for them in the eternal City 
of God. Here, they laid their burdens down and found peace and joy in 
salvation from sin. 

Here, countless faithful lovers have pledged their troth and it 
has been a lighthouse, a guiding post for them and all who have chosen 
to use it. Here, last rites and comforting words have been said and sung 
for more of the dead and sorrowing than can be counted, which have 



297 



helped the sorrowing to look for a continuing and eternal dwelling place 
where "all tears shall be wiped from their eyes." 

Through hopes and fears, war and peace, and through lean years 
and prosperous years, the walls of these four houses of worship have 
heard many pleading words of prayer, many thousands of which have 
long since been answered to those for whom they were spoken. 

Blessed were the days when the people sang gospel hymns with- 
out the benefit of instrument of any kind. They sang unrestrained and 
free. They did the best they could and enjoyed it. But in our day we 
feel a tlirill at the strains of tlie grand old organ and voices of the vested 
choir to lead us in singing the hymns, which is no less sacred than the 
acapella singing of our fathers. Change and progress in the name of the 
Lord, it is. 

We have long ago emerged from the calling of uneducated pastors. 
Although, many of those whom our fatiiers called, bless their memory, 
had native ability and above all apparently were truly God-called men. 
We emerged to the calling of college and seminary trained pastors, pas- 
tors called of God, plus tlirough study are qualified to "rightly divide 
the word of truth" upon tlie basis of its origin in Hebrew and Greek, 
and able to hold the interest of both the educated and the relatively un- 
educated, young and old, of our day. 

A reversal of our interpretation of the Scriptures as touching free 
grace from that of Calvinism to that of Arminianism has taken place; 
we have survived the pressure upon us to crawl into a shell of predesti- 
nation and election and with millions of others have espoused the pro- 
gram of Christ's great commission. We have, blessed be the name of the 
Lord, led many hundreds to a loving Savior at home and abroad. We 
have had a part in the ministry of Christian education and healing. With- 
out it no organization has a right to call itself a Church of the Lord Jesus 
Christ. 

Proud as we are of our glorious history, may the First Baptist 
Church not rest upon tliat, or relax in complacency, but meet the changes 
and challenges of each succeeding generation, ever remaining true to 
the will of God and His purpose for it as a Church. 

298 



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